The Beaver Trilogy with Director Trent Harris

Monday, September 9
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1hr 45mins // directed by:Trent Harris // featuring:Groovin' Gary, Sean Penn, Crispin Glover

Director Trent Harris arrives at the Coolidge to present his cult classic series: The Beaver Trilogy, three interrelated short films about a young man from the small town of Beaver, Utah who is obsessed with Olivia Newton John.

It all began in 1979 with the chance meeting in a Salt Lake City parking lot where filmmaker Trent Harris is approached by an earnest small-town dreamer from Beaver, Utah. Harris is invited to film his talent show in Beaver. At the show, the man dons black leather, a blond wig, and performs in drag as Olivia Newton John. Harris captures it all on tape. What unfolds is a strange, funny, and ultimately poignant portrait of a true outsider.

Not willing to let the story go, Harris then created a dramatic piece, "Beaver Kid 2" based on the documentary. This interpretation, shot in 1981 on a home video camera with a budget of $100, features the young Sean Penn (Milk, Mystic River) as the Beaver Kid re-enacting the same scenario.

Four years later and still possessed by the tale, Harris then rewrote the script, cast Crispin Glover (Back to the Future, Hot Tub Time Machine) in the lead, and created the final segment, "Orkly Kid", as an American Film Institute project. The three pieces were re-edited, compiled, and screened originally at the Lincoln Center in New York City in 2000.

The Beaver Trilogy unveils the inner world of a fantastic character compelled to hide yet at the same time tell the world about his secret life. Now, 24 years on from the original, Trent Harris brings his tales back to Boston for a one-night-only screening.

Tickets: $10 general / $7 students, members