Arts and Entertainment
Roxie in rewind
1976 Robert Evans and Dick Gaikowski, soon joined by Peter Moore, turn the Roxie into a rep house. Midnight screenings of movies by John Waters and others begin.
May 1977 Premiere of There is No Crisis Here, a documentary illegally made by the South African resistance.
Oct. 9, 1979 Western Front New Wave Music Film Festival, featuring videos by Devo and others.
April 1, 1980 Premiere of No Maps on My Taps, featuring tap dancer Sandman Sims in person.
Jan. 14, 1981 Premiere of Derek Jarman's The Tempest.
Feb. 20, 1981 Premiere of Curt McDowell's Loads.
August 1981 First annual San Francisco Jewish Film Festival.
Feb. 9, 1982 Premiere of Barbara Hammer's The Lesbos Film.
June 27, 1982 Evening of stand-up comedy with Paul Krassner.
July 2, 1982 Premiere of Frank Henenlotter's Basket Case.
May 1983 Wim Wenders retrospective, including the premiere of The State of Things.
June 1984 Roxie Distribution picks up its first film, The Simple Minded Murder, starring Stellan Skarsgård.
Dec. 14-17, 1984 Tribute to Edith Massey (1918-84).
Jan. 12-13, 1985 Roger Ebert and Gene Siskel host "If I Owned a Movie Theater," a six-film program.
Feb. 17-20, 1985 Peter Lorre festival.
March 15, 1985 Premiere of Joel DeMott and Jeff Kreines's Seventeen, which was banned from public television.
April 1986 In town for the San Francisco International Film Festival's first Akira Kurosawa Award, Kurosawa visits the Roxie. The same month, Jean-Luc Godard's Hail Mary opens, drawing 300 picketers. A painting of the protest now hangs in the Roxie lobby.
1987 First (and last) Wilmer Award, a lifetime achievement award, presented by Philip Kaufman to Elisha "Cookie" Cook Jr. of The Maltese Falcon fame. Banning: "We got a $75 suite for Cookie. Unfortunately, he ran up a bar tab of $500 each and every day he was there. But he did an excellent job of relating information about the film clips we showed."
July-August 1988 Paul Cox's Vincent: The Life and Death of Vincent Van Gogh grosses more than $80,000 in three weeks, setting an in-house record.
March 16, 1990 First annual San Francisco Documentary Film Festival, including Nick Broomfield's Driving Me Crazy.
June 1990 Roxie cofounder Robert Evans dies; August-September calendar is dedicated to him.
Sept. 3, 1990 "Jerry Lewis Marathon"; all profits are donated to the Muscular Dystrophy Association; between features Jerry's telethon is shown on the big screen.
Sept. 11, 1990 Premiere of Yvonne Rainer's Privilege.
April 12, 1991 Premiere of Anne Bohlen's Blood in the Face.
April 26, 1991 Premiere of John Woo's The Killer.
September 1991 A monthlong film noir program. Roxie president and programmer Elliot Lavine: "It was enormously successful because I found films that hadn't been recycled The Big Easy, not The Big Heat."
Nov. 15-21, 1991 Dennis O'Rourke's documentary The Good Woman of Bangkok sets a one-week in-house box-office record ($35,000).
March 5, 1992 The Roxie celebrates its "sweet 16" birthday with free champagne and Female Trouble.
March 18, 1992 Jack Stevenson presents musical Scopitones, '60s precursors to music videos.
July 1992 Premiere of Christopher Münch's The Hours and Times.
Aug. 8, 1992 Daylong tribute to glam horror icon Barbara Steele.
Oct. 16, 1992 Premiere of Joe Berlinger and Bruce Sinofky's Brother's Keeper.
Jan. 15, 1993 Premiere of Rémy Belvaux's Man Bites Dog.
March 1993 First "Up the Academy Awards" celebration, soon to become an annual popular Roxie fixture.
March 26, 1993 The Roxie turns 17 with Skidoo and Eric Preminger (Otto's son) in person.
April 17-18, 1993 Tribute to Mario Bava, the first American retrospective of his work.
January 1994 John Dahl's Red Rock West opens successfully at the Roxie after its cable and video releases, kick-starting Dahl's career and setting off a short-lived trend of after-video theatrical releases. Banning: "The following year [Red Rock West star] Nicholas Cage did Leaving Las Vegas and won the Oscar."
March 18-19, 1994 Tribute to Dario Argento.
April 15-16, 1994 Tribute to Abel Ferrara, with an infamous appearance by the director. Lavine: "On opening night [Ferrara] was out of control, just a slave to his impulses, and his desires are pretty dark. Under the circumstances, the fact that he could even put three words together was a miracle."
April 22, 1994 Premiere of Nick Broomfield's Aileen Wuornos: The Selling of a Serial Killer.
June 3-9, 1994 "Warner Bros. Pre-Code Classics," the first of the Roxie's many precode programs.
May 12, 1995 William K. Friedkin's Cruising opens successfully despite Gay Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation protests that force the Roxie to cancel an appearance by the director. Lavine: "Six minutes before the first showing, Friedkin called and said, 'How many people are in line? Do you want me to sneak in?' It was great to reintroduce the film without bricks being thrown through the window."
Sept. 8, 1995 Premiere of Nico Icon, distributed by Roxie Releasing.
Sept. 22, 1995 Premiere revival of The Mystery of Kaspar Hauser, with Werner Herzog in person.
Oct. 26, 1995 Premiere of Craig Baldwin's Sonic Outlaws.
August 1996 Matthew Bright's Freeway opens at the Roxie and rapidly becomes a cult favorite.
Oct. 31, 1996 On the opening night of the Film Arts Festival, Survival Research Labs' Mark Pauline is detained by the San Francisco Police Department for transporting and operating a V-1 jet engine in front of the theater.
March 21, 1997 First annual MadCat International Women's Film Festival.
Sept. 5-11, 1997 50th-anniversary premiere revival of Jacques Tourneur's Out of the Past.
Feb. 27, 1998 World premiere of Nick Broomfield's Kurt and Courtney, hours after the Roxie receives a letter from Courtney Love's lawyers. Lavine: "Courtney's father [Hank Harrison] almost got into a fistfight in front of the theater. He turned on this kid in an insidiously evil way and yelled, 'You little sycophant, hippie wastrels like you just want to get famous because you knew my daughter!' The poor hippie was just standing there like, 'Dude, where's my car, I gotta get outta here!' "
March 20, 1998 U.S. theatrical premiere of Werner Herzog's Little Dieter Needs to Fly, with Herzog in person.
July 31, 1998 25th-anniversary revival of Enter the Dragon, starring Bruce Lee.
Jan. 23, 1999 Premiere of Wong Kar-wai's Fallen Angels.
May 7-8, 1999 First semiannual San Francisco Sex Workers Film and Video Festival.
Dec. 6, 1999 Premiere of Craig Baldwin's Spectres of the Spectrum.
Sept. 22, 2000 Tribute to go-go with the Devil-Ettes.
Jan. 12, 2001 Premiere revival of Female Convict, Scorpion: Jailhouse 41.
April 27, 2001 Premiere of Virginie Despentes and Coralie Trinh Thi's Baise-moi.
June 10, 2001 The Roxie turns 25 with a party featuring Singin' in the Rain.
Nov. 4, 2001 Premiere of Boom: The Sound of Eviction.
Johnny Ray Huston
* "Premiere" indicates Bay Area theatrical premiere, if not West Coast or world premiere.