Each year in the spring, the Drexel Theater chain in Columbus, Ohio, holds a 24-hour science fiction movie marathon. The event started in the mid-1980 and features a tremendous collection of classic films, contemporary premieres and plenty of extras to fill in the gap.
This year’s marathon will take place from 12 noon Saturday, April 19 to 12 noon Sunday, April 20 at the Drexel Theatre, 2254 E. Main Street in Bexley, Ohio (a suburb of Columbus). This will also be a chance to meet the Rejects (Neil, Brian, Cole and myself) live and in person as we will be attending the entire event. You can’t miss us. We’ll be the group of chubby guys with beards, eating popcorn.
The line-up promises a well-rounded selection of films:
The Day the Earth Stood Still (1951)
Stranger from Venus (1954)
Big Man Japan (2007)
The Andromeda Strain (1971)
Pitch Black (2000)
Battlestar Galactica (1978)
Nineteen Eighty-Four (1984)
Lady Terminator (1988)
Journey to the Seventh Planet (1962)
A Clockwork Orange (1971)
The Ohio 24-Hour Sci-Fi Marathon is more then just movies. Each year, you get to see hours of additional material like rare and vintage trailers, short subjects, classic cartoons and so much more. Content featured in the past include Daffy Duck in the original Duck Dodgers cartoon, the mid-70s spoof short Gravity, Flash Gordon serial episodes and the drug-induced SpaceBoy (which must been seen to be believed).
The guest of honor at this year’s marathon is the Oscar-winning actress Patricia Neal, whom sci-fi fans will recognize as Helen from The Day the Earth Stood Still. Neal will be on hand to talk about this and her other films, including Stranger From Venus which will also be shown at the marathon.
For those who do not have the fortitude to handle the entire 24 hours, there will be a special Halfathon that starts at midnight on April 19, featuring a partial list of the films (The Day the Earth Stood Still, A Clockwork Orange, Journey to the Seventh Planet, Pitch Black, Lady Terminator and Big Man Japan).
For more information on the 25th Annual Ohio 24-Hour Science Fiction Marathon, including how to purchase tickets in person, by mail or by PayPal, visit www.scifimarathon.com. Tickets are $35 in advance and $40 at the door ($18 in advance and $20 at the door for the Halfathon).
While the line-up is always exciting, a few titles jump out at me. There will be an Ohio premiere of the documentary Sputnick Mania as well as the raunchy Indonesian rip-off Lady Terminator. Fans of the SciFi Channel’s Battlestar Galactica can revisit the original with the 1978 feature version of the classic television show’s pilot episode.
Finally, goofy Asian flicks with giant monsters always go over well with the marathon crowd. This year, the Marathon Gods are giving us an early look at the Japanese import Big Man Japan. Check out the trailer below. This will easily be a marathon highlight.