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Music Box Theatre To Pick Up Some Portage Theater Schedule

By Chuck Sudo in Arts & Entertainment on May 26, 2013 3:00PM

Photo credit: Berklieblog

As the chickens seem to be coming home to roost for Portage and Congress Theater owner Eddie Carranza, one of the questions asked with Saturday's news that the Portage was closed indefinitely has been what would happen with the Six Corners landmark movie house's upcoming schedule.

The Music Box Theatre is picking up some of the bookings for the time being. First up is a May 29 screening of Portrait of Jason in a newly restored 35mm print from Milestone Films. The Northwest Chicago Film Society scheduled the Chicago premiere of Shirley Clarke's 1967 film in conjunction with Reeling and Black Cinema House.

In a statement, NWCFS vice president and programmer Kyle Westphal said they were grateful the Music Box stepped up to the plate. "We have an obligation to our audience to present the films we promised on our calendar and we take this expectation seriously. It is a great privilege to partner with the Music Box so that Chicagoans retain the opportunity to view Portrait of Jason in a pristine, fresh-from-the-lab, 35mm print." Music Box general manager Dave Jennings added, "There is no way of knowing what the future will hold, but it was important to act quickly to secure a venue for this important screening. The closing of the Portage is very unfortunate for the film community.”

Ald. John Arena (45th) said he would block Portage owner Eddie Carranza's attempts to transfer the venue's liquor license from its current holder, Dennis Wolkowicz, saying the community had major reservations about Carranza's ownership of the theater and would rather it go dark than have Carranza operate it. The city's Liquor Control Commission revoked the liquor license from Carranza's other venue, the Congress Theater, putting the future of the beleaguered Logan Square venue in jeopardy. (The Congress may still serve alcohol while Carranza undergoes the appeals process.)

The Portrait of Jason screening is scheduled for 7 p.m. on the 24th. The Music Box's screenings of Renoir will now happen at 4:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m.

Additionally, The NWCFS' screening of All I Desire starring Barbara Stanwyck has been located to the Patio Theater (6008 W. Irving Park Road) 8 p.m. May 27. This will likely be the final film to screen at the Patio before they close for the summer because they don't have the money to fix their air conditioning unit.