Emory Celebrates 75th Anniversary of "Gone with the Wind" Premiere with Free Talk and Film Screening

November 24, 2014

In celebration of the 75th anniversary of the world premiere of the classic film "Gone with the Wind" Emory University's Film and Media Studies presents a talk by faculty member and department chair Matthew Bernstein on December 1, 2014 at 7:30 p.m. in White Hall 205. His lecture explores the December 1939 events of the premiere and the film's meaning as a major milestone in the city's history.

A free screening of the film will take place on December 6, 2014 at 1:00 p.m. in White Hall 208.

Thousands of people attended the original screening in 1939 along with a parade of limousines featuring stars from the film. President Jimmy Carter would later recall it as "the biggest event to happen in the South in my lifetime." However few people know it was also the result of fretful, fearful and complex negotiations between Hollywood companies and city leaders. This lecture provides a detailed exploration, from Hollywood's point of view, of the difficulties involved in mounting this unprecedented extravaganza in a segregated southern city.

Matthew H. Bernstein
Matthew H. Bernstein has authored or edited six volumes on Hollywood history and criticism, including "Screening a Lynching: The Leo Frank Case on Film and TV." With Emory professor emeritus Dana F. White, he is writing a history of Atlanta moviegoing in the segregated era. He is a former co-chair of, and continues to volunteer for the Atlanta Jewish Film Festival, and also serves on the Plaza Theater Foundation Board. He is a member of the National Film Preservation Board at the Library of Congress, and hosts the Atlanta Cinema Club, now in its 17th year. In 2006, he received the IMAGE Film Award for advancing film culture in the city; in 2013, he earned the Emory University Creativity & Arts Award for his contributions to the arts "on campus, the region and beyond."