American theatre chain Alamo Drafthouse has announced that it will be screening 1939 black-and-white classic “The Hunchback of Notre Dame” to honor France’s fire-ravaged iconic cathedral.
An inferno ripped through the iconic Paris landmark on Monday, destroying a large part of its roof and causing its central spire to collapse, leaving the world stunned. The theatre chain said the screenings will be free for its members of Victory scheme and take place in Austin, New York, San Francisco, Denver, Phoenix, Raleigh, and Tempe between April 22 and May 4.
In a statement, obtained by The Hollywood Reporter, Drafthouse CEO Tim League said, “In times of loss, I want to spend time and reminisce and reflect. But I also have a strong desire to revisit, on the big screen, my favorite cinematic memory of Notre Dame and judging from the global response, I don’t think I’m alone.
“So we’re bringing Charles Laughton’s Quasimodo to the big screen at select Alamo Drafthouse locations for a series of free Victory screenings of the 1939 adaptation of ‘The Hunchback of Notre Dame’.” “Bring your family, share with your friends, and let’s all raise a glass to a global treasure, badly damaged but destined to triumphantly return,” he added.
The film, directed by William Dieterle, is considered one of the most memorable cinematic adaptations of Victor Hugo’s 1831 novel of the same name. It featured Charles Laughton as Quasimodo and Maureen O’Hara as Esmeralda.
The story, set in Paris of 1482, follows a beautiful gypsy girl, Esmeralda, who enamors the heart of various men, and the half-blind and deaf bell-ringer of Notre Dame, the hunchback Quasimodo. The sales of Hugo’s book has also picked up in the aftermath of the Notre Dame blaze that was eventually doused after 12 hours.