|Posted 10/7/2015 10:12:19 PM by Don Covington
News from Hollywood Press viewed 835 times
Friday, October 02, 2015 - Hollywood, California
A new documentary on the Flying Gaonas had its Hollywood premiere at the historic Eqyptian Theater
|The Flight Fantastic LA Premier|
Egyptian Theater was the site of Hollywood’s first full-blown movie
premier in 1922, featuring Douglas Fairbanks swinging in as Robin Hood;
how appropriate that on September 23rd 2015 the Egyptian hosted the LA
premier of The Flight Fantastic with its thrilling aerial stunts.
to the screening of Tom Moore’s film about trapeze, the crowd in the
Egyptian’s historic courtyard was treated to an hour of dazzling
acrobatics performed by Leia & Katrina and Le Petit Cirque under the
guiding hand of Nathalie Gaultheir.
the time the theater filled to sold-out capacity, people were buzzing
with adrenaline and anticipation; the audience was primed and prepped
for Moore’s documentary about the history of trapeze and, in particular,
the Flying Gaonas - a family of acrobats that elevated the art of
trapeze to become the world’s best known aerial artists.
included actresses Kathy Bates, Susan Sullivan, Michael Learned,
Kathryn Helmond, Marilu Henner, Adrienne Barbeau, and Lee Meriwether.
Many will recall the definitive film Trapeze produced by and starring
former circus performer Burt Lancaster; his daughters Joanna and Susan
were also in attendance. The Gaonas, tremendously inspired by
Lancaster’s film, still quote its dialogue to this day.
by the spontaneous bursts of applause, occasional tears, and prolonged
standing ovation, the documentary hit all the right notes. With
thrilling archival and original footage, the film captures a compelling
history of trapeze as well as a charming portrait of the Flying Gaonas
seven years in research and development, The Flight Fantastic had
raised a level of anticipation among insiders; its LA premier suggests
that any expectations were surpassed. Through imaginative editing,
thrilling aerial footage, and innovative storytelling technique, the
film is a rousing crowd-pleaser. The audience often responded like
spectators at a circus.
Following the screening, Andrew
Crane of the American Cinematheque moderated a Q&A, where filmmaker
Tom Moore was joined by members of the Gaona Family: Tito, Chela, Richi,
and Jose. The next generation of flyers was represented by Mando (son
of Armando and Lela) and Alex (son of Richie and Keri Kelsey).
himself proved agile and adept at maintaining the evening’s brisk pace,
magnanimously focusing most of the attention on the Gaona family.
Originally trampoline acrobats from Mexico, the Gaonas had transferred
their astonishing skills to trapeze, quickly ascending to a league of
their own through discipline, daring, humor, and star power. All these
qualities and more were on full display the night of Moore’s Hollywood