Island Museum to celebrate 40th anniversary of ‘Close Encounters of the Third Kind’

The most elaborate science fiction film ever made—“Close Encounters of the Third Kind”—was released 40 years ago. You are invited to celebrate the film’s anniversary during a unique event at the Catalina Island Museum on Saturday, Oct. 28 in its outdoor Ackerman Family Amphitheater. Only 100 tickets are available.

The most elaborate science fiction film ever made—“Close Encounters of the Third Kind”—was released 40 years ago. You are invited to celebrate the film’s anniversary during a unique event at the Catalina Island Museum on Saturday, Oct. 28 in its outdoor Ackerman Family Amphitheater. Only 100 tickets are available.

Prior to its release in 1977, movie-goers were introduced to space travel through films such as “2001: A Space Odyssey” and “Star Wars.” These films were wildly popular but left many wondering what, or who, might be out there. With the mysterious arrival of alien beings in Close Encounters of the Third Kind however, the Los Angeles Times noted that people began to ask not “‘Will we find them,’ but ‘Will they find us?’”

Following the immense success of “Jaws,” director Steven Spielberg added writing to his credentials with the release of “Close Encounters of the Third Kind.” He also tapped production designer, Joe Alves, known for creating the sharks and set design for “Jaws,” to work on CE3K. For the film, Alves created what would become the largest movie set since Cecil B. DeMille’s “Ten Commandments.”

This special event takes place at the Catalina Island Museum from 5:15 to 9 p.m. Alves will speak at 6 p.m. followed by a screening of the film at 6:30 p.m.

Tickets are $75. Tickets may be purchased online at CatalinaMuseum.org, by phone at 310-510-2414, or in person during your next visit to the museum. All proceeds benefit the Catalina Island Museum and support scholarships for five local high school students who are interested in film to attend the event and meet Alves.

The Catalina Island Museum is open seven days a week from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., except New Year’s Day, Independence Day, Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day in the new Ada Blanche Wrigley Schreiner Building at 217 Metropole Ave.

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