5-25-77… Finally!

5-25-77… Finally!

You ever wait for something so long that you become utterly convinced that it’s not going to happen? Let’s step back in time to episode #57 of this very show which aired back on January 23, 2013. For me, this was the episode where something I REALLY WANTED, simply never took shape.

In that episode, Ginny and I were discussing the films we were most excited to see that year. If you to listen, the segment starts at 23 minutes, 41 seconds into the show. As you will hear, there was one film that blew away all the rest. It wasn’t new to me as I had been scouring the internet for some time watching it evolve. It’s a little film called 5-25-77. That date, of course, is the date the world first saw Star Wars.

At the point of episode #57, the filmmakers had lost their distribution, were in the process of crowdfunding the editing and had a trailer that hooked me from the first moment I saw it. Watch it and see if you don’t agree…

The elevator pitch for this one…

“In 1976, a young small-town movie geek is given the opportunity of a lifetime — to travel to Hollywood and see an advance screening of the yet-to-be released Star Wars — in this charming and inspirational coming-of-age story based on the real-life experiences of director Patrick Read Johnson.”

Here’s the more recent trailer, prepared for the upcoming showing…

The slightly longer pitch…

“Here, seventeen-year-old Pat Johnson is the only sci-fi movie geek in his small town of Wadsworth, Illinois. Despite a head full of film knowledge and an imagination exploding with impossible cinematic dreams, Pat is doubtful that anyone from a town of 750 people could ever make a mark in Hollywood. As he approaches high school graduation, he grows more and more resigned to a life of factory work. Disheartened by her son’s dejection, Pat’s mom cold calls the editor of American Cinematographer magazine in a desperate attempt to open a door of career possibility. Amazingly, it works, and Pat is given the opportunity of a lifetime: to meet young auteur Steven Spielberg — fresh off his Hollywood-conquering success with Jaws — and view an in-progress cut of Star Wars. Returning to Wadsworth with a newfound optimism and convinced that the new film will change the future of cinema, Pat is determined to mobilize his peers to see it on its opening day, May 25, 1977.”

For a time, I was kind of obsessed with getting hold of a copy of this film, even reaching out to people associated with the project. I had this fear that the film might fade away unseen. Of course, I never obtained a copy, but I kept watch for any news. Jump forward to 2017 (aka now) and I’m thrilled to learn IT HAS ARRIVED.


It’s hitting theaters in limited release this week. As I dug through the theater list at 5-25-77themovie.com, I noticed the Kentucky Theater in Lexington would be showing it this Thursday. In honor of the 40th anniversary of Star Wars, Ginny and I will be sitting in that theater watching this story unfold at a theater I loved throughout college. It’s also the spot where she and I will launch our 2017 Magic Mystery Weekend. Let our adventure begin in a theater seat resting a galaxy not so far, far away.

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