Forrest Scene

January 2012 News Releases

Rare science fiction film a feature of Kansas Silent Film Festival Feb. 24 and 25

The Midwest premiere of the 1902 short science fiction classic, “A Trip to the Moon,” will be one of the features at the 16th annual Kansas Silent Film Festival scheduled Feb. 24 and 25 in White Concert Hall at Washburn University. All festival events are free and the public is welcome.

Created by special effects leader George Melies, this rare hand-colored version was the opening entry of the 2011 Cannes Film Festival and was featured prominently in the recent movie, “Hugo.”

Kansas City film historian, Denise Morrison, will provide introductions for the films and give an overview of the artists and the era of the silent films.

Accompaniment for the feature films and shorts will be provided by the Mont Alto Motion Picture

Orchestra; Marvin Faulwell and Greg Foreman, organ; Bob Keckeisen, percussion; and Phil Figgs and Jeff Rapsis, piano.

The festival concludes with an annual cinema dinner at 5:15 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 25 at the Bradbury Thompson Alumni Center. Tickets are $25 per person (non refundable) and reservations are required. Send payment to KSFF Cinema-Dinner, Box 2032, Topeka, Kan. 66601-2032.

For more info, go to

The festival schedule:

Friday, Feb. 24, 7 p.m.:

  • "Pigs is Pigs" (1914), featuring John Bunny
  • "The Wishing Ring" (1914), comedy/drama filmed at one of the first major studios, Paragon Studio in Fort Lee, N.J.
  • "The Clinging Vine" (1926), an early DeMille Production starring Leatrice Joy.

Saturday, Feb. 25, 10 a.m. to noon,

  • "The Cure" (1926), with Charlie Chaplin
  • "Alice in the Jungle" (1925), cartoon produced by Walt Disney.
  • "Tramp Tramp Tramp" (1926), with Harry Langdon and Joan Crawford, in one of her first roles.

1:30 – 5 p.m.

  • "Way Down East" (1920), a melodrama starring Lillian Gish.
  •  "Sugar Daddies" (1927), Laurel and Hardy short.
  •  "Spies," (1928), Fritz Lang drama.

7:30 p.m.

  • "A Trip to the Moon," (1902), science fiction classic by Georges Meilies, special effects master. Rare hand colored version making believed not viewed by public in 80 years. Midwest premiere.
  •  "He Did and He Didn’t (1916), with Roscoe “Fatty” Arbuckle.
  • “Monte Cristo” (1922), with John Gilbert.

The KSFF organization hosts the festival through sponsorships and donations. To learn more, contact Bill Shaffer at (785) 670-3151.

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Dena Anson, university relations, (785) 670-1711

Editors: Photos available upon request