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George Eastman Museum to honor Robert Forster

The Dryden Theatre will screen Medium Cool (1969) and Jackie Brown (1997) on November 2

Rochester, N.Y., October 23, 2019—The George Eastman Museum announced today that it will honor the late actor Robert Forster on Saturday, November 2 with special screenings of Medium Cool (1969) at 1 p.m. and Jackie Brown (1997) at 4 p.m. in the Dryden Theatre.

A longtime supporter of the George Eastman Museum, Forster was first elected to its board of trustees in 2001 and served as a trustee until 2010, when he was elected as a trustee emeritus.

“Robert was an enthusiastic advocate of the Eastman Museum and the work that we do here,” said Bruce Barnes, Ron and Donna Fielding Director, George Eastman Museum. “He was always a source of positive energy. He will be remembered fondly by his friends at the museum as one of the most tenacious and charismatic actors of his generation.”

Forster, a Rochester native, died on October 11 of brain cancer at age 78. He is survived by his longtime partner, Denise Grayson, four children, and four grandchildren.

A Tribute to Robert Forster

Saturday, November 2, 1 p.m., Dryden Theatre
Medium Cool (Haskell Wexler, US 1969, 111 min., 16mm)
Following two noted supporting performances in Reflections in a Golden Eye (John Huston, 1967) and The Stalking Moon (Robert Mulligan, 1968), Robert Forster brings a sizzling screen presence in Medium Cool. His inscrutable stare and volcanic intensity perfectly characterize a man caught up in the turbulence of the late 1960s. Forster plays John Cassellis, a news cameraman who discovers his footage is being handed over to the FBI and becomes enraged. After being fired, he finds a job as a freelancer during the Democratic National Convention in 1968. Partially shot against the backdrop of the actual convention, director Haskell Wexler’s cinema verité style blurs the lines between reality and fiction. The Dryden Theatre will present Forster’s personal 16mm print, donated to the Eastman Museum in 2004.

Saturday, November 2, 4 p.m., Dryden Theatre
Jackie Brown (Quentin Tarantino, US 1997, 154 min., 35mm)
Robert Forster earned a much-deserved Academy Award nomination in Quentin Tarantino’s first film after Pulp Fiction (1994). In this adaptation of Elmore Leonard’s Rum Punch, Forster plays Max Cherry, a bail bondsman caught up in a tangled double-cross that turns into a much more sinister situation. Cherry is hired by Ordell Robbie (Samuel L. Jackson) to bail out smuggler Jackie Brown (Pam Grier) after she is caught with some of Ordell’s money and drugs. Ordell plans to murder Jackie before she can testify to the ATF, but Jackie has another plan in mind. Forster imbues Max with a world-weariness that can only come from experience with the darker places in life, while leavening the performance with a hope that there’s always one more adventure on the horizon.

Tickets for the Tribute to Robert Forster screenings can be purchased at the Dryden Theatre box office. Admission for each screening is $10 for the general public, $7 for museum members, $5 for students (w/ID), and free for ages 17 and under. Doors will open at 12:15 p.m. For more information, visit eastman.org/dryden.

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