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Buster Keaton Silent Movie Film Festival with Rex Ward on the Mighty Wurlitzer at the Paramount

January 13, 2014

The Paramount will be showing two Buster Keaton silent films — One Week and Cops! — on Sunday, January 19, starting at 3pm. This Buster Keaton Double Feature is part one of a three-part Theatre Organ – Silent Film Festival Series featuring Mr. Rex Ward, Paramount Center for the Arts House Organist. Rex has been the Paramount’s House Organist for twenty years and is a member of the Piedmont Theatre Organ Society. Admission is by $5 donation at the door and it is general seating. For more information, call 423-274-8920 or go to www.theparamountcenter.com.

One Week is a 1920 American short comedy film starring comedian Buster Keaton, the first film to be released made by Keaton on his own The film was inspired by a Ford Motor Company documentary, Home Made (1919), an educational short about prefabricated housing. Keaton saw the film and decided to parody it. One Week has many of the devices used in Home Made, including the wedding, the Model T and the use of the pages from a daily calendar to show the house being built in one week. Many special effects, such as the house spinning around during a storm and the train collision, were filmed as they occurred and were not model work. The house was built on a turntable, so it would be able to spin during the violent rainstorm scene. The fall Keaton takes when he steps out of the bathroom and falls two stories down, is one of the few occasions he truly hurt himself making films. The impacts of the fall made his arms and back swell, and his physical trainer, Al Gilmore had to put him in hot and cold showers and then apply olive oil and later horse liniment to eventually get the swelling down. The mischievous rival is an unknown actor. Joe Roberts has a brief bit as a strong-man piano mover.