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Reporting on movies, film festivals, film production, premieres, movie events, industry trends and plays from around the world
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The Global Film Village: Ray Bradbury at 40th San Diego Comic-Con by Marla Lewin

 


Johnny Depp, Megan Fox, Tim Burton, Robert Downey Jr, Jeff Bridges, Tron, Super-heros, and  Science Fiction are everywhere in downtown San Diego for 5 days. And then there is the man who epitomizes science fiction, Ray Bradbury. Ray wrote about Mars as well as The Illustrated Man little knowing that a future generation would become enamored with decorating themselves to an unprecedented level. Ray attended the very first Comic-Con 40 years ago, and he returned again this year. He also wrote a forward to the program book, 40 years of Comic-Con.   

 

Although in his 80's Ray Bradbury  spoke again this year, as he has each year at the Santa Barbara Writers Conference, and at libraries and other venues where he can persuade young people to embrace reading.  He has spoken to the Palm Springs Womens Press, were he spoke to young students who were studing his book Farenheit 451. Ray's message is always the same we should  treasure books. Ray once told us how he loved dinosaurs and exploration but didn't fly until the age of 62 but then began to fly regularly. John Huston had hired him to write the script for his movie Moby Dick in 1953, after reading one of his short stories. Ray has published more than 600 short stories in 60 years. Ray will be 89 on August 22 of this year. I was fortunate to have attended his 80th birthday celebration which included performances of some of his plays and tributes from friends and performers he has known over the years.

 

Ray Bradbury really is a renassiance man, a forward thinker.  He writes short stories, and poetry; as well as  books and plays that get made in to movies.  He has planned shopping centers for cities including the Glendale Galleria.  He wrote The Martian Chronicles, and we all expected to have a man there by now.  He has writen about book burnings,(Farenheit 451) as we move into an internet age, he continues to write and speak and inspire us all. His latest book is, We'll Always Have Paris.  In 2001 he received  the National Book Award for his contribution to American literature, and in 2004, he was awarded the National Medal for the Arts.  In 2007, he was made a COMMANDER OF THE ORDER OF ARTS AND LETTERS (Frances highest literary honor) and was was awarded a Pulitzer Prize Citation for his carreer.

 

Ray still makes his home here in Los Angeles. In recent years, Ray has been attending  performances of his plays, lately at the Frement theatre in Pasadena. His plays really should be staged around the world. There are three one acts, entitled RAY BRADBURY'S YESTERMORROWS,  playing at this time through September 5th, directed by Alan Neal Hubbs.

 

A Device Out of Time features David Fox-Brenton and brothers Seth and Daniel Casanova. This story is about how each of us is a time machine that allows others to glimpse the past through our experiences however fleeting.  The Cistern features  Georgan George, and Rose Prichard.  It is a story of love lost and rediscovered through reflection on a quiet afternoon. The Meadow is set in a decaying movie studio, which is haunted by old props and characters, sets of grand cities, and a caretaker not wanting to see the land sold for a real estate development.  Michael Prichard plays the caretaker and old friend to the studio mogul played by Steven Robert Wollenberg, it also features Andy Sell, and Robert Kerr. This was probably based on Ray's own experiences as he watched movie studios close to his home converted into Century City and housing tracks from the imagination factories that he often worked at or passed on his daily activities.

 

Ray is a national treasure and we will be eternally grateful to his gift of imagination. So if you have a desire to walk among the stars on Mars or wander the African Veldt or visit the 600 other locations that Ray has chronicled pick up one of his books, watch one of his movies or television shows or attend a live performance and you might be fortunate enough to meet the master himself.

 

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About MarlaLewinGFV

Lewin Marla
(Global Film Village)

Marla is a producer, playwright, screenwriter, publicist and now a journalist. She attends 12 to 20 film festivals per year. She has spoken on filmmaking at many festivals including Cannes and SXSW.

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