Martin Scorsese and Jay Cocks Curate Summer Double Features at Film Forum

Richard III

“Marty & Jay’s Double Features,” a three-week, 50-film festival of 25 classic combos selected by director/film preservationist Martin Scorsese and critic/screenwriter Jay Cocks, will run at New York’s Film Forum from Friday, August 16 to Thursday, September 5.

For Film Forum’s “Fourth Annual Festival of Summer Double Features,” the theater asked the two friends and cinéphiles extraordinaires to come up with the double bills of their wildest dreams. Among their more unusual and curious pairings are Laurence Olivier’s Richard III with Roger Corman’s The Tomb of Ligeia; Roberto Rossellini’s Voyage to Italy with Vincente Minnelli’s The Long, Long Trailer; Stanley Kubrick’s Barry Lyndon with The Case of the Mukkinese Battle-Horn, starring Peter Sellers and Spike Milligan; Sam Wood’s Kings Row with William Cameron Menzies’ 3-D The Maze; Orson Welles’ F for Fake with Nicholas Ray’s Party Girl; Ingmar Bergman’s Winter Light and André De Toth’s Play Dirty; Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger’s The Small Back Room with Rex Ingram’s 1926 silent The Magician; and 18 other combos. The series includes many rare archival 35mm prints, along with several restorations, many of them funded by Scorsese’s The Film Foundation.

Says Scorsese, “When I was growing up, I almost always saw movies paired as double features. Sometimes the pairings made sense, sometimes you’d wonder why they were being shown together, but it was a great way to experience cinema—two films back-to-back start a dialogue, and they illuminate each other. That’s how Jay and I have been watching movies together for 50 years now, and we were excited to be able to program this series for Film Forum.”

“There was no method at all in choosing these double features, but maybe just a touch of madness,” says Cocks, the former film critic for Time, Newsweek, and Rolling Stone, and collaborator with Scorsese on the screenplays of The Age of Innocence, Gangs of New York, and Silence. “Marty and I grab time, whenever we can, to recharge by watching—often re-watching—movies for which we have a glancing affection or interest. Sometimes they reflect one another. Sometimes they rebound. We make no distinctions between classics and indulgences. School is out for these. Have fun. We do.”

Says Bruce Goldstein, Film Forum’s director of repertory programming, “These are not your grandmother’s double features. Not surprisingly, Marty and Jay have come up with some of the slyest, most outré and outlandish combos I’ve ever encountered. Very few of the connections are obvious at first glance—you actually have to go watch the two films together to figure them out for yourself, or to make connections of your own.”

The double-bill schedule may be found here.

News Stories