Flashback
A look back at this day in film history
November 26
November 15, 1956
Tender Box Office

Early on the chilly evening of 15 November 1956 outside of the Paramount Theater in New York City, thousands of fans screamed for their idol Elvis Presley. He wasn’t there for a concert, but for the premiere of his film debut, a Civil War melodrama called Love Me Tender (after Elvis’ hit song). While in hindsight it seems obvious that the King was an ideal candidate to transition from recording to film, the producers were not so certain at the time: the film’s original title was The Reno Brothers and Elvis was billed third, after Richard Egan and Debra Paget. But after Love Me Tender pulled in over a million dollars on its first weekend, and audiences could barely hear the film’s wooden dialogue over the screaming teens in the audience, Elvis became box office gold, going on to make 31 feature films in the next 15 years.


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Casablanca November 26, 1942
Casablanca released

In New York City, stars, including Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman, gathered for the premiere of Casablanca.

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November 26, 1993
Thirty Two Short Films About Glenn Gould released

Few knew what to expect from a film called Thirty Two Short Films About Glenn Gould when it opened in New York.

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November 26, 1993
A Life in Fragments

In the same month and year that Jane Campion’s The Piano was released, going on be nominated for 8 Oscars and winning three, a little known filmmaker from Toronto, François Girard, released Thirty Two Short Films About Glenn Gould, a bio-pic of sorts about the man that many consider to be one of the world’s greatest pianist. Taking its structure from Bach’s Goldberg Variations, the film mixes short pieces of documentary, animation, narrative (with Colm Feore playing Gould), and performance to throw light on this complex artist. Girard commented that “as Gould was such a complex character, the biggest problem was to find a way to look at his work and deal with his visions. The film is built of fragments, each one trying to capture an aspect of Gould.” The film also helped break open the biopic genre to all sorts of experimentation and transformation, as well as becoming iconic for innovative cinema. In 1996, for example, The Simpsons released their own tribute "22 Short Films About Springfield."

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