December 3 4:00 pm

Starring: Mae Murray, John Gilbert, Roy D’Arcy Directed by Erich von Stroheim
Sunday, December 3, 2023, 4:00 with live musical accompaniment by pianist Andrew Earle Simpson
The Merry Widow is a romantic drama/black comedy that was a critical and box office success – based on the 1905 Franz Lehár operetta of the same name. The film is a sumptuous delight for holiday audiences with Mae Murray – known as the girl with the “bee-stung lips” – and John Gilbert, whose performance as Prince Danilo in The Merry Widow was his breakthrough role in silent pictures. Gilbert went on to play opposite Greta Garbo in many of the silent era’s most romantic films [such as Flesh and the Devil, featured on the 1st season of the Atlas Sounds of Silence Film Series in 2016-17]. The Merry Widow is about the struggle between love, royalty, and the commoner with a fairy tale ending. This film contains uncredited appearances by budding stars Clark Gable and Joan Crawford – and of note is the direction by the avant-garde and visionary director Erich von Stroheim who nourished sexual and psychological undertones in cinema during the silent era.
The screening will include a pre-show intro and a post-show panel discussion with Andrew Earle Simpson, Melissa J. Houghton, Executive Director of Women in Film and Video, Dr. Frances Gateward, Professor and Chair of the Department of Communication, Culture, and Media Studies at Howard University, Dr. Caitlin McGrath, Executive Director of Greenbelt Cinema, and Dr. Oliver Gaycken, Associate Professor of English and Comparative Literature, School of Literature Languages, and Cultures at University of Maryland College Park.