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Avalon Theatre Announces “The Genius of Hitchcock” Benefit

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On Sunday, May 8, 2016 at 5:00pm, the Avalon Theatre will hold its annual spring benefit to support the theater. The theme of this year’s event is “The Genius of Hitchcock,” a celebration of director Alfred Hitchcock and his enduring legacy. The evening will include a screening of the acclaimed 2015 documentary Hitchcock/Truffaut, followed by a conversation with the film’s director, Kent Jones, hosted by film critic Arch Campbell.

In 1962, a young French film director, writer and critic named Francois Truffaut spent a week interviewing Alfred Hitchcock at Universal Studios in Los Angeles. At the time, Hitchcock was judged to be nothing more than an entertaining director of popular studio films. All that changed when Truffaut published his transformative book, Hitchcock/Truffaut. The detailed account of Hitchcock’s filmmaking process revealed the genius behind the “Master of Suspense,” elevating Hitchcock’s reputation to one of the world’s great artists.

Jones’ 2015 documentary Hitchcock/Truffaut, which premiered at the 2015 Cannes Film Festival, digs deeper into this once-in-a-lifetime conversation between filmmakers with audio from the original interviews, film clips, and commentary from award-winning directors like Martin Scorsese, Wes Anderson and David Fincher. The Los Angeles Times called the film “smart, thoughtful and elegantly done.”

Jones is Director of the New York Film Festival at the Film Society of Lincoln Center and an internationally recognized writer and filmmaker. He is the author of several books of criticism, has been a regular contributor to Film Comment magazine for many years, and was selected as a 2012 Guggenheim Fellow. He has worked with Martin Scorsese throughout the years on numerous documentaries, including co-writing and directing with Scorsese the Emmy-nominated and Peabody Award-winning 2010 film, A Letter to Elia.

Host Arch Campbell, called a “local legend” by The Washington Post, has reported on movies, theater, entertainment, and the arts since the 1970’s. He appeared regularly on Washington, D.C. television for forty years and has won eight Emmy awards.

“Kent Jones and Arch Campbell have made invaluable contributions to the art form of cinema, and we are thrilled to bring them together at the historic Avalon Theatre to discuss Kent’s film about Alfred Hitchcock, one of film’s greatest artists, ” said Bill Oberdorfer, Executive Director of the Avalon. “Support for this event will help the Avalon continue doing its part to preserve film history and culture through our unique programming for the DC community.”

The event will be held at the Avalon Theatre and includes a catered reception at 5:00pm followed by the event program at 7:00pm. Tickets to the event are $250 for the reception and program and $50 for the program only. Underwriter sponsorships are also available.

On May 5-7, the Avalon will present a festival of film classics directed by Hitchcock and Truffaut, including Rear Window, PsychoNorth by Northwest, Notorious, The 39 Steps, Rope and Jules and JimUnderwriters and $250 ticket purchasers will receive FREE admission to all festival films. The film festival schedule will be available soon on the Avalon website.

Proceeds raised from the event will support Avalon film education and the general operating fund. The Avalon’s film education programs include the Film Studies series and Cinema Classroom at the Avalon, a free screening and discussion program for 7th-12th graders that has reached over 4000 area students since its launch in 2013.

For more information and to buy tickets, visit www.theavalon.org/2016benefit.