The continuing success of "Star Wars" at the Uptown has led to a change of location for two 20th Century-Fox pictures. "Damnation Alley" and "The Turning Point," originally scheduled to open there this fall.
"Damnation Alley," briefly retitled "Survival Run" by the studio, may have seemed like a logical successor at one point, since it's also a science-fiction movie, a melodrama about the survivors of a nuclear holocaust. Directed by Jack Smight and featuring Jan-Michael Vincent, Dominique Sanda and Jackie Earle Haley, among others, the film is now due at the Aspen Hill, Riverdale Plaza and Turnpike.
"The Turning Point," a backstage story about the rivalries and romances of ballet performers, written by Arthur Laurents, directed by Herbert Ross and co-starring Anne Bancroft, Shirley MacLaine, Mikhail Baryshnikov and Leslie Browne, has been diverted from the Uptown to the Dupont Circle, where it will open Monday, Nov. 14, following a world premiere showing the night before at the Eisenhower Theater.
It now appears that "Star Wars" is likely to continue at its present area locations until the Christmas season. Both Fox and the management of the Uptown are eager to see the film surpass all box-office records for a single attraction at one theater in the Washington market.
The Circle management has announced the American premiere of "Iphigenia," Michael Cacoyannis' adapation of the tragedy of Euripides, on Wednesday, Nov. 9, at one of their first-run houses. A benefit preview is planned for the night of Nov. 8 at the Eisenhower Theater with proceeds earmarked for the Modern Greek Study Association.
Bookings have been announced on two more Christmas releases. The new Gene Wilder comedy, "The World's Greatest Lover," a spoof about the search for a silent film star to rival Valentino, opens Dec. 23 at the Academy, Jenifer, Springfield Mall, Tyson's Cinema and White Flint. "Telefon," an espionage melodrama starring Charles Bronson and directed on location in Finland by Don Siegel, arrives Dec. 16 at the Academy, Arlington, Beacon Mall, K-B Baronet West, K-B Cerberus, Landover Mall, Loew's Palace, Marlow and Roth's Tysons Corner.
The K-B MacArthur has a "Grand Opera Film Festival" in the works later this month. Beginning Wednesday, Oct. 26, the series will feature nine full-length opera movies, each running three days: "Queen of Spades," "Tosca," "Katerina Izmailova," "Aida," "Eugene Onegin," "Prince Igor," "The Tsar's Bride," "Iolanta" and "The Marriage of Figaro."
The Air and Space Museum begins a free revival series devoted to vintage aviation melodramas this Thursday, Oct. 6, with a showing of something called "Flight Commander," which appears to be the original version of "Dawn Patrol," directed by Howard Hawks in 1930 with Richard Barthelmess and Douglas Fairbanks Jr. in the leads. It's the 1933 remake with Errol Flynn that's usually revived.
The museum has an equally rare item scheduled for the night of Wednesday, Nov. 9, "Hell's Angels." Howard Hughes' legendary first production, eventually co-directed by James Whale and co-starring Ben Lyon and Jean Harlow. The other titles in the series are "The Eagle and the Hawk," "Wings," "Hell in the Heavens," "The Lost Squadron" and "Today We Live," none made later than 1934.
With the exception of the Nov. 9 showing, all the films are scheduled for Thursdays at 7:30 p.m. in the museum's theater. No tickets are required and seating is on a first-come, first-served basis.