Selma native organizes free screening for film’s 50th anniversary

Published 4:59 pm Saturday, July 21, 2018

By: Oniska Blevins

“The Heart is the Lonely Hunter’s” 50th  anniversary release date is around the corner.  The movie, based off the 1940 novel written by Carson McCullers, was filmed mostly in Selma. After it’s release, the movie won several awards, including an Academy Award for Best Actor to Alan Arkin for his role as Mr. Singer. To honor the movie’s release, Selma native Mike Lewis has organized a free screening  at the Walton Theater on the anniversary of the movie’s release.

“The movie was released on July 31, 1968 into theaters, so on July 31, 2018 the 50th anniversary of the movie’s release, and we’re planning to show it at 6 p.m. at the Walton Theater.”

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Lewis can remember being 16 during the time of the filming in 1968, and he said Selma has changed alot since then.

“It was exciting to think about a major movie being made in town,” he said.

He thought that  showing the movie would allow Selmians to see the change on the screen.

“I thought it would be fun for Selma to see it on the big screen on the 50th anniversary,” he said. “People will get to see what Selma looked like in 1968.”

After some requests, he added an additional day for the showings, and the movie is now being shown on two different nights.

“Some people cannot make it to Selma on a weeknight, so we are also showing the movie Sunday afternoon July 29 at 2:30 p.m.,” he said. “So people will be able to come and see it either Sunday afternoon or Tuesday night.”

Local community members who participated in the film will also be present to speak at the end of the movie. Lewis said this is a chance for them to shed some light on what it was like to be a part of such a largely successful film.

“I’m going to give a brief introduction, and then we are going to invite people after the movie is over, to share their experience about being in the movie,” he said. “We want to give them a brief moment to explain what memories watching the movie brought back.”