Croydon Clocktower’s much-loved arts cinema opened on 3 March 1995, with Heavenly Creatures, a psychological thriller from director Peter Jackson, who subsequently made the Lord of the Rings trilogy.
It also featured Kate Winslet in her first starring role.
It was a remarkable day in the town’s cultural history, with Cock and Bull Stories – an exhibition examining Picasso’s representation of animals – also opening in the Clocktower; which Time Out soon named “The jewel in Croydon’s crown.”
Now Croydon Council, which created the Clocktower complex, and the David Lean Cinema Campaign, which presents most of the screenings there, look forward to celebrating the 25th anniversary of the opening on Tuesday 3 March, with another absorbing film.
Be Natural: The Untold Story of Alice Guy-Blaché is a fascinating documentary that reveals the life and work of the groundbreaking first female director, screenwriter, producer and studio owner.
From 1896 to 1920, Alice directed 400 films in France and the USA.
The evening will start with complimentary drinks, courtesy of the Council, and will conclude with a Q&A session, with the film’s director Pamela Green (via Skype from Los Angeles), co-producer Cosima Littlewood and contributor Roland-François Lack.
Although arts-related cuts resulted in the cinema closing from April 2011 to March 2014, the last six year years have seen it flourish due to the dedication of the Campaign’s Community Interest Company, and the support of its many loyal patrons.
Paula Murray, Croydon Council’s Creative Director, said: “We are fortunate in Croydon to have our very own small scale independent cinema in the David Lean.
Run by enthusiastic volunteers, it has a great all round offer and is a significant part of Croydon’s Clocktower now and for the future.”
Campaign Chairman Philip Howard said: “We’re delighted that the Cinema has reached this milestone, and we plan to keep delivering a wide variety of films to the people of Croydon for years to come.”
See www.davidleancinema.org.uk for ticket availability.
Photo caption: Alice Guy-Blaché (behind tripod) filming in 1906.
The David Lean Cinema is an intimate, 68 seat venue, named after the renowned Croydonborn director. Since March 2014, the Campaign has presented an expanding programme, including films rarely-screened elsewhere. The cinema currently holds the Time Out ‘Love London’ Croydon Local Culture award.
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