Fans of extreme close-ups, early Clint Eastwood, and, of course, "The Whistle", take note: The Autry National Center
is presenting a tribute to the great Spaghetti Western auteur, Sergio Leone
"Once Upon a Time in Italy: The Westerns of Sergio Leone
" will run from from July 30 to January 22, 2006, and will feature screenings of some of the master's greatest works, including a series of outdoor screenings that will be free to the public.
In conjunction with the screenings, the Center has also put together a nice little online exhibit, featuring posters
, publicity shots, and other images from the museum's collection
(though not all images are necessarily directly related to Leone's films).
Most interesting of all (and not a little bizarre), is the members only preview, which, according the Center's website, will feature:
"...live classical music–including the unforgettable soundtracks composed by Ennio Morricone, colossal 8-foot puppets reenacting scenes from The Good, the Bad and the Ugly
, exciting demonstrations of Western-themed movie stunts, Italian wines and beers, espresso stations, a bruschetta bar, and an Oscar-style entrance! "
Which begs the question: do we really need to see a 8-foot puppet of Lee Van Cleef
? And what the hell do puppets have to do with Spaghetti Westerns, much less Sergio Leone?
But I quibble.
I mean, check out the outdoor screening schedule alone:
Saturday, August 27 A Fistful of Dollars
Saturday, September 3 For A Few Dollars More
Saturday, September 10 The Good, the Bad and the Ugly
Saturday, September 17 Once Upon A Time in the West
And, for Leone completists, the Center has even joined with AFI to throw in a rare screening
of Once Upon a Time in America
Very nice, indeed.