‘Saturday Night Fever’ to screen two nights for 40th anniversary


Mayfaire 16 cinemas will host the 40th anniversary screening of 1977’s Saturday Night Fever.

It will screen Sunday May 7th at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m. and again on Wednesday May 10th at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m.

The film has been restored and will be a director’s cut version by John Badham.

Released in 1977, Saturday Night Fever was a huge box office hit as was its mega-selling soundtrack that featured many hits from the Bee Gees like “Night Fever,” “More Than a Woman,” and “Stayin’ Alive” and Yvonne Elliman’s version of the Bee Gees song “If I Can’t Have You.”

Actor John Travolta shot to superstardom (he was a regular on TV’s Welcome Back, Kotter) with the role of Tony Manero, a young Brooklyn man escaping strife at home and a cloudy future by attending discos on the weekends. Surrounded by a circle of friends, Tony becomes a local dance king with dance partner Annette (played by Donna Pescow).

Badham would go on to be a busy director in the 1980’s, helming WarGames (1983), Blue Thunder (1983), Short Circuit (1986), Stakeout (1987) and the underrated American Flyers (1985). He wrote the book I’ll Be in My Trailer which focused on the creative tension and productivity between directors and actors. The first chapter opens with Badham and a crew of 60 waiting for then 22-year old Travolta to shoot on the Verrazano Bridge. But the director’s anecdote is as much about how to work with actors as it is a young director learning how to run his set.

Music catapulted the soon-to-be iconic movie even further but Bee Gees songs were added after filming was completed. They were approached by producer Robert Stigwood while recording a new album in France. Saturday Night Fever became the best-selling soundtrack of all time until 1992’s “The Bodyguard” and won a Grammy for Album of the Year.

The movie helped push disco music into popular culture, its soundtrack selling fifteen plus million copies in the U.S. and remained at the top of the music charts for four months straight into summer 1978.

More music-related films would follow throughout the rest of the 1970’s – Travolta would follow-up with Grease (1978), the same year saw The Wiz and star-studded Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Heart Club’s Band, and would go on hiatus with 1980’s Xanadu starring Michael Beck, Olivia Newton-John and Gene Kelly.

In addition to the film presentation there will be interviews with Badham and a look back the movie’s history.




About avenuewilmington (308 Articles)
A website hosting articles about Wilmington music history (its bands and bands visiting the area), articles from my ILM based base publications Avenue and Bootleg magazine (2005- 2009) and articles from other publications (Star News, Performer, The Tonic)
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