Tuesday, July 9, 2024

Super Watch: "Superman: The Movie" (1978) in San Antonio w/ NathanC

Tollin, NathanC and yours truly

Watched:  07/02/2024
Format:  Theatrical/ Santikos/ TPR Cinema Tuesdays
Viewing:  Unknown
Director:  Richard Donner

For years, our own NathanC (the famed Nathan Cone of Texas Public Radio/ TPR's Cinema Tuesdays) has been trying to secure a print or digital copy of Superman: The Movie to include in the annual summer classics film series he hosts via TPR.   

Travel and other challenges have beset our ability to pull this off, but this year the stars aligned and Nathan was able to get WB to send a copy.  On July 2nd, 2024, I was able to attend the screening and help out.  Nathan asked that I help intro the film, and then stay for a Q&A.  You can visit the Q&A as both audio and transcript here on the TRP website.

Unsurprising to me is that Nathan is a great host; professional but warm and fun.  Clearly the crowd that came out is enthusiastic - they were there a good hour before curtain and buzzing.  The Santikos theater in Northwest San Antonio was nicely appointed and had primo seats with nice side tables for popcorn and - for me - to quickly jot some notes.

I was incredibly nervous about the Q&A as (a) I have a tendency to over-answer any given question, and (b) I was concerned I would not be able to answer a question thrown my way.  

Prior to showing up, Nathan mentioned that a former DC Comics staffer, Anthony Tollin, was going to be in attendance.  Anthony was at DC during a fascinating period of transition, when the original old guard was silver-haired but still around and the next generation was coming in and bringing new ideas to comics.  Folks like Kirby were mailing in work, but working for DC, you might see Siegel and Shuster come into the office.  He knew Julie Schwartz!  He colored Gil Kane!

To someone like me, this is like finding out that you're going to be talking to Gene Kranz or an equivalent.  Especially when I found out Mr. Tollin had been assigned to Christopher Reeve to shepherd him around DC Comics when Reeve came in to do some research.  

I couldn't help it, so I jumped the gun and immediately included Mr. Tollin in the Q&A, and, after, I asked him to sign some comics which he'd worked on.  As a side-note, Mr. Tollin also works on The Shadow novella reprint collections and has written a lot of those Smithsonian mini-books you may have seen associated with CD releases of radio programs.

As a point of Mr. Tollin being kinda extra cool, if you look at the first picture, he's wearing the rings worn by The Phantom in the comic strips.

The questions were insightful and on a level interested in narrative more than the technical achievements of the film - and maybe that worked well for me.  I have *thoughts* on Superman, and I think I was able to answer folks' queries - and loved one woman's questions about the nature of our secret heroism.  I wanted to high-five her so bad.

Anyway, thanks to Nathan and Texas Public Radio for such a great night.  And to Mr. Tollin for showing patience with a fanboy.  Oh, and I got to see San Antonio-based pal, Courtney M!  Always a delight.

Depending on a few factors, I really want to slip down to San Antonio for the screening of Pandora's Box starring Louise Brooks.  

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Ryan glad that you had this opportunity. I’m sure you did a great job with all of it and you enjoyed it.