The location of the screening of "Bright Road" was incorrect in Friday's Weekend section. The film will be shown Tuesday at 6 p.m. in Room A03, Building 41 on the Van Ness campus of the University of the District of Columbia.
THERE ARE NO long-range plans to change the Circle."
That was co-owner Ted Pedas' response this week to persistent speculation that big changes might be afoot at the aging repertory theater on Pennsylvania Avenue.
"We had considered first-run (movies) because repertory is way off," Pedas said, "but we entertained that for about a day. There's not a lot of interest by young people in foreign and the classic films, but we just keep trying."
He said that management had discussed a number of other options for the 600-seat Circle but decided that no format changes would be made "for as long we are there. We have no intention of turning it into a four-plex, no intention of selling out to developers. We are not talking to developers, but nothing is forever."
Pedas said that the present operation is not profitable. Matinee seats sell for $1 and evening screenings go for $2. The twin bills range from notable art or foreign films, such as Breaker Morant and Gallipoli (this Friday and Saturday), to past box-office bashes, such as the four-star Hitchcock thrillers The 39 Steps and The Lady Vanishes (this Sunday and Monday). The programs change three times a week.
"We can't afford it now and haven't for years, but we'll continue it. It gives us great pleasure to do this," Pedas said.
The theater, at 2105 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, was the first in the 71-screen chain started by Ted and brother Jim who, as students at nearby George Washington University, grew tired of the theater's single-billed features and inflexible line-up of westerns and average-grade features, and decided to do something about it. They took over the movie house in 1957.
In recent years, however, the Circle has been hurt, one insider says, by cable television, rising sales of VCRs, increased costs for second-run movies and general operating expenses. The theater, built in 1937, also needs several costly repairs, including a new, $20,000 roof.
The Circle chain has invested heavily in renovating some of its other theaters, such as the MacArthur, the Avalon, the Embassy, the Uptown and the Ontario. And it plans to build a nine-screen complex in the 4500 block of Wisconsin Avenue NW, near the Tenley Circle Metro stop. The complex will also include a restaurant, a videotape outlet, a game room and possibly a record store. Construction is expected to begin this summer and be completed by the Christmas movie season.
Meanwhile, Pedas and his Dupont Circle theater have been "put on alert" by the new owners of the Dupont Circle Building who last month cleared out the building's tenants. The theater is expected to close sometime this summer when the developer guts the building.
American University celebrates romance this Saturday with "Animated Valentines," a free program of animated love movies beginning at 7:30 in Wechsler Theater in the Mary Graydon Center. Included in the show are Special Delivery, the 1977 Academy Award winner for "Best Animated Short," and Birds, Bees and Storks. In all, there'll be seven top- rated shorts, at three to seven minutes each, along with several Disney offerings. Call 885- 2040 or 684-1050.
You can literally pay in blood to see Rob Lowe's latest movie, Youngblood, next week at the AMC Academy 6 at Beltway Plaza in Greenbelt. Concerned by the critical blood shortage in the metropolitan area, theater manager John Houston will pass out free movie passes to the film in exchange for a pint of blood donated to the Maryland Blood Center. Technicians will accept donations from Tuesday through Thursday next week, from 4 to 8 at the plaza. For details, call Houston at 474-0077. For a showtime schedule, call 441- 8800.
The Natinal Air and Space Museum is undertaking a major collaboration with the University of South Carolina to transfer to safety film more than 800,000 feet of vintage Movietone newsreel footage made of "almost every major aviation event and personality of the 1920s." The estimated cost of saving these rare films, which are stored on "rapidly deteriorating nitrate stock," has been set at $550,000.
Don't forget that there's still time to enter "Expose Yourself," the Biograph's annual showcase for local filmmakers working in 16mm. The entry deadline is March 4, with screenings on March 12 and 13 at the Georgetown movie house. Call 338-0707.
The Baltimore Film Forum's ongoing salute to the late Orson Welles offers Touch of Evil on Thursday evening. The following Thursday, February 27, it's Chimes at Midnight, his adaptation of Shakespeare's Falstaff plays. "Chimes," made in 1967, stars Jeanne Moreau, John Gielgud and Margaret Rutherford. Reels roll at 8 at 516 North Charles Street in Baltimore. Admission is $3.50 for the general public; $2.50 for Film Forum and Baltimore Museum of Art members. Call 301/685-4170.
The Smithsonian Resident Associate Program will also dip into Welles' work with a similar program designed to honor the filmmaker. It begins February 24 with his masterful 1942 black-and-white follow-up to "Citizen Kane," The Magnificent Ambersons, based on the novel by Booth Tarkington and starring Joseph Cotten, Anne Baxter and Agnes Moorhead. The six-movie series will run Monday evenings through March in the American History Museum's Carmichael Auditorium. Call 357-3030 for information.
SHORT SUBJECTS -- The National Archives' continuing "American Lives" series offers Herb E. Smith's 1984 Strangers and Kin on Friday at noon at Eighth Street and Pennsylvania Avenue NW. It's free. Call 523-3000.
The French-made Danton, with English subtitles, directed by Polish filmmaker Andrzej Wajda, screens free on Friday at 8 p.m. at Northern Virginia Community College's Alexandria campus, Bisdorf Building, Room 110. Call 845-6207.
The free "Country House on Film" series offers the The Uninvited (1944> and Kitty (1945), on Friday and Saturday beginning at 2:30 and Sunday at 6 at the National Gallery of Art. Call 737-4215.
The Babe Ruth Museum in Baltimore celebrates "Black History Month" this weekend with There Was Always Sun Shining Someplace, a look at life in the Negro Baseball Leagues. The film is included in the price of museum admission and screens at 10:30 a.m., noon, 1:30 p.m. and 3 p.m., Saturday through Monday. Call 301/727-1539.
On Tuesday at 6, the Martin Luther King Library offers Bright Road, starring Dorothy Dandridge and Harry Belafonte and directed by Gerald Mayer. The library, at 901 G Street NW, continues its celebration of "Black History Month" on Thursday evening at 6 with the 1972 "blaxploitation" Superfly, starring Ron O'Neal. A panel discussion follows the screening. Call 727-1271 for details.
The American History Museum's free "America on Film" series offers Rhapsody in Blue, the 1941 story of George Gershwin, Wednesday at noon in Carmichael Auditorium.
HISTORICALLY SPEAKING -- Friday marks the day in 1848 when photographer Matthew Brady shot a picture of James K. Polk, the first president to be photographed . . . Friday's birthdays include actress/singer Florence Henderson, 52; and actor/dancer Gregory Hines, 40.
Saturday's birthday celebrants are actors Cesar Romero, 79, and Kevin McCarthy, 72; comedian Harvey Korman, 59; actresses Claire Bloom, 55, Marisa Berenson, 39, and Jane Seymour, 35.
On Sunday, movie director John Schlesinger turns 60; Sonny Bono, 51; and actor LeVar Burton, 29.