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Film Festival Schedule - New York

Friday June 26, 2009 - 2:00 pm
Lincoln Center, New York City

Before The Balls!
Double-bill of the first two shows before they had the "Ball" title
Two US Premieres!
Series co-creator/co-producer Martin Lewis in-person

PLEASURE AT HER MAJESTY'S (1976, 101 min)
THE MERMAID FROLICS (1977, 52 min)

The "Secret Policeman's Ball" title was first used for the 1979 Amnesty show - but the seeds of the series were planted in 1976 and 1977 with these two pioneering shows organized by John Cleese. These shows subsequently became regarded as part of the "Secret Policeman's" canon. "Pleasure At Her Majesty's" is the film of the 1976 show "A Poke In The Eye (With A Sharp Stick)" which was to British comedy what George Harrison's 1971 "Concert For Bangladesh" was to rock music. A gathering of the British comedic tribes. Never before screened uncut in the US. Includes the only-known documentary footage of the Monty Python troupe rehearsing. "The Mermaid Frolics" stage-directed by Monty Python's Terry Jones has never been seen in the US in any form. Never on TV, VHS or DVD. This double-bill of rarities is a delight for fans of Monty Python, Beyond The Fringe and British comedy.

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John Cleese and Peter Cook on a park bench for Amnesty


Friday June 26, 2009 - 9:30 pm
Lincoln Center, New York City

Opening Night Extravaganza!
Two Premieres in one night!
Series co-creator/co-producer Martin Lewis in-person

REMEMBER THE SECRET POLICEMAN'S BALL? (2004, 75 min)
THE SECRET POLICEMAN ROCKS! (2009, 60 min)

The Opening Night of the festival features two premieres. There will be the World Theatrical Premiere of a superb documentary about the "Secret Policeman's Ball" series - crammed full of vintage clips and contemporary recollections by the stars. This will be followed by the World Premiere of a new special celebrating 30 years of rock performances for Amnesty. Given the wealth of Monty Python fans and Amnesty supporters in the entertainment community - the opening night audience is likely to be rather star-studded...

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Saturday June 27, 2009 - 1:00 pm
Lincoln Center, New York City

Theatrical Premiere!
Film of Amnesty's legendary world tour - completely unseen since 1988
Introduced by Martin Lewis - who co-conceived the "Human Rights Now" tour with Amnesty Executive Director Jack Healey

HUMAN RIGHTS NOW! (1988, 180 min)

In 1988, following the success of its 1986 US tour (being shown at Lincoln Center on Sunday June 28), Amnesty commemorated the 40th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights with a breath-taking 6-week world tour visiting all 5 continents.. Amnesty stalwarts Sting and Peter Gabriel were joined by Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band, Youssou N'Dour and Tracy Chapman for the 20-concert tour. Guests along the way included Bono, k.d. lang, Joan Baez. This exhilarating film presents the grand finale concert in Argentina augmented by highlights from the preceding 6 weeks of performances and campaigning about human rights throughout the world. Shown just twice on HBO and then never shown again. Never on VHS or DVD.

  More Info...


Saturday June 27, 2009 - 4:30 pm
Lincoln Center, New York City

Before The Balls!
Double-bill of the first two shows before they had the "Ball" title
Two US Premieres!
Series co-creator/co-producer Martin Lewis in-person

PLEASURE AT HER MAJESTY'S (1976, 101 min)
THE MERMAID FROLICS (1977, 52 min)

The "Secret Policeman's Ball" title was first used for the 1979 Amnesty show - but the seeds of the series were planted in 1976 and 1977 with these two pioneering shows organized by John Cleese. These shows subsequently became regarded as part of the "Secret Policeman's" canon. "Pleasure At Her Majesty's" is the film of the 1976 show "A Poke In The Eye (With A Sharp Stick)" which was to British comedy what George Harrison's 1971 "Concert For Bangladesh" was to rock music. A gathering of the British comedic tribes. Never before screened uncut in the US. Includes the only-known documentary footage of the Monty Python troupe rehearsing. "The Mermaid Frolics" stage-directed by Monty Python's Terry Jones has never been seen in the US in any form. Never on TV, VHS or DVD. This double-bill of rarities is a delight for fans of Monty Python, Beyond The Fringe and British comedy.

  More Info...


Saturday June 27, 2009 - 8:00 pm
Lincoln Center, New York City

The First Pair of Balls!
Double-bill of the iconic first two "Balls" never released theatrically in the US
Series co-creator/co-producer Martin Lewis in-person

THE SECRET POLICEMAN'S BALL (1979, 91 min)
THE SECRET POLICEMAN'S OTHER BALL (ORIGINAL UK VERSION) (1981, 99 min)

This double-bill presents the uncut British theatrical versions of the films of the iconic two shows that put the "Secret Policeman's Ball" name on the map. These films were enormous successes in the UK - presenting what was an exhilarating new elixir for audiences. A unique blend of the finest in contemporary British comedy (members of Monty Python. Rowan Atkinson, Billy Connolly, Peter Cook et al) and contemporary British rock (Pete Townshend, Sting, Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck, Phil Collins, Bob Geldof). These two UK films were snapped up by fledgling film distributor Miramax Films and distilled into a single hybrid film that became Miramax's first hit in the summer of 1982. These uncut versions of the UK theatrical releases collectively contain over 30 minutes of material not available on DVD versions. Expect to see familiar faces among the many aficionados of British comedy in the audience...

  More Info...


Sunday June 28, 2009 - 12:00 noon
Lincoln Center, New York City

All-Day Rock For Amnesty!
Marathon screening of Amnesty's first music-only event not seen in any form in over 20 years!
Amnesty's legendary 1986 all-day concert shown in 'real time' - celebrating its anniversary this month
Never on VHS Never on DVD!

A CONSPIRACY OF HOPE (1986, 660 min)

A very special treat for rock music fans - and an opportunity to experience an iconic 1980s rock event again - in real time. Inspired by the success of the "Secret Policeman's Ball" shows, in June 1986 the US section of Amnesty organized a tour to spread the human rights message. Starring U2, The Police (specially reformed after a 4-year hiatus), Peter Gabriel, Jackson Browne and Lou Reed. The tour finale was an all-day Sunday concert at Giants Stadium televised as a Live Aid-style special. The headliners were joined by a slew of top artists including Bryan Adams, Carlos Santana, Miles Davis, Joan Armatrading, Bob Geldof, Joan Baez, Steven Van Zandt, Joni Mitchell. This 11-hour spectacular only ever aired live - and was never repeated. And has never been released on VHS or DVD. Now the whole show will be re-experienced on another Sunday in June - some 23 years later... In the same city... In the identical time-frame: 12-noon till 11pm. With food and drink available nearby to help sustain you through the experience. There will also be a special half-day ticket from 6pm (subject to availability on the night) for those who want to arrive later. Click here to see the full schedule detailing the timetable for all the artists.

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Bob Geldof performs for Amnesty at his
first-ever charity show. It wasn't his last...


Monday June 29, 2009 - 3:00 pm
Lincoln Center, New York City

World Theatrical Premiere!
Rockez votre Monday apres-midi en Paris pour Amnesty!
TV special of Amnesty's famous 1998 concert in Paris
Introduced by "Secret Policeman's Ball" series co-creator/co-producer Martin Lewis

THE PARIS CONCERT FOR AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL (1998, 180 min)

Amnesty celebrated the 50th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights with a concert in Paris - the city where the historic document was signed. Amnesty stalwarts Peter Gabriel, Bruce Springsteen, Tracy Chapman, Youssou N'Dour were joined by Jimmy Page & Robert Plant, Radiohead, Alanis Morisette, Shania Twain for this 3-hour extravaganza - which includes several musical collaborations between the participants. Special moments include a touching appearance by the Dalai Lama.

  More Info...


Monday June 29, 2009 - 7:00 pm
Lincoln Center, New York City

Double-bill delight!
Definitive documentary about the "Secret Policeman's Ball" series - and brand-new music special!
Series co-creator/co-producer Martin Lewis in-person

REMEMBER THE SECRET POLICEMAN'S BALL? (2004, 75 min)
THE SECRET POLICEMAN ROCKS! (2009, 60 min)

This double-bill features two highly entertaining treats. "Remember The Secret Policeman's Ball?" is a superb documentary about the whole "Secret Policeman" series - crammed full of vintage clips and contemporary recollections by the stars. The second film is a brand-new special celebrating 30 years of rock performances for Amnesty.

  More Info...


Tuesday June 30, 2009 - 2:30 pm
Lincoln Center, New York City

The Second Pair of Balls!
Two US Premieres!
Double-bill of the two Balls that showcased the new wave of British comedy
Series co-creator Martin Lewis in-person

THE SECRET POLICEMAN'S BALL (1979, 91 min)
THE SECRET POLICEMAN'S OTHER BALL (ORIGINAL UK VERSION) (1981, 99 min)

This double-bill presents the uncut British theatrical versions of the films of the iconic two shows that put the "Secret Policeman's Ball" name on the map. These films were enormous successes in the UK - presenting what was an exhilarating new elixir for audiences. A unique blend of the finest in contemporary British comedy (members of Monty Python. Rowan Atkinson, Billy Connolly, Peter Cook et al) and contemporary British rock (Pete Townshend, Sting, Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck, Phil Collins, Bob Geldof). These two UK films were snapped up by fledgling film distributor Miramax Films and distilled into a single hybrid film that became Miramax's first hit in the summer of 1982. These uncut versions of the UK theatrical releases collectively contain over 30 minutes of material not available on DVD versions. Expect to see familiar faces among the many aficionados of British comedy in the audience...

  More Info...


Tuesday June 30, 2009 - 7:00 pm
Lincoln Center, New York City

World Theatrical Premiere!
Rockez votre Tuesday soir en Paris pour Amnesty!
TV special of Amnesty's famous 1998 concert in Paris
Introduced by "Secret Policeman's Ball" series co-creator/co-producer Martin Lewis

THE PARIS CONCERT FOR AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL (1998, 180 min)

Amnesty celebrated the 50th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights with a concert in Paris - the city where the historic document was signed. Amnesty stalwarts Peter Gabriel, Bruce Springsteen, Tracy Chapman, Youssou N'Dour were joined by Jimmy Page & Robert Plant, Radiohead, Alanis Morisette, Shania Twain for this 3-hour extravaganza - which includes several musical collaborations between the participants. Special moments include a touching appearance by the Dalai Lama.

  More Info...


Wednesday July 1, 2009 - 3:00 pm
Lincoln Center, New York City

Theatrical Premiere!
Film of Amnesty's legendary world tour - completely unseen since 1988
Introduced by Martin Lewis - who co-conceived the "Human Rights Now" tour with Amnesty Executive Director Jack Healey

HUMAN RIGHTS NOW! (1988, 180 min)

In 1988, following the success of its 1986 US tour (being shown at Lincoln Center on Sunday June 28), Amnesty commemorated the 40th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights with a breath-taking 6-week world tour visiting all 5 continents.. Amnesty stalwarts Sting and Peter Gabriel were joined by Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band, Youssou N'Dour and Tracy Chapman for the 20-concert tour. Guests along the way included Bono, k.d. lang, Joan Baez. This exhilarating film presents the grand finale concert in Argentina augmented by highlights from the preceding 6 weeks of performances and campaigning about human rights throughout the world. Shown just twice on HBO and then never shown again. Never on VHS or DVD.

  More Info...


Wednesday July 1, 2009 - 7:00 pm
Lincoln Center, New York City

The Second Pair of Balls!
Two US Premieres!
Double-bill of the two Balls that showcased the new wave of British comedy
Series co-creator Martin Lewis in-person

THE SECRET POLICEMAN'S THIRD BALL (1987, 89 min)
THE SECRET POLICEMAN'S BIGGEST BALL (1989, 94 min)

After a 6-year hiatus, the "Secret Policeman's Ball" series roared back with a vengeance in the late 1980s. A new generation of British humorists - dubbed "alternative comedians" - emerged to take over the mantle of the Pythons. The 1987 show introduced many of these - including Hugh Laurie ("House M.D."), Stephen Fry ("Blackadder"), Robbie Coltrane ("Nuns On The Run"), Dawn French & Jennifer Saunders ("Absolutely Fabulous") and the Spitting Image puppets. John Cleese was on hand to assist in the changeover - and was ritually humiliated by Fry & Laurie! There was also a stellar musical lineup including Peter Gabriel, Kate Bush, David Gilmour, Mark Knopfler, Duran Duran and US guests Jackson Browne and Lou Reed. The 1989 show mixed Brit-com's (by-then) old guard: John Cleese, Michael Palin, Peter Cook & Dudley Moore (in their last appearance together) - and new wave including Hugh Laurie, Stephen Fry, Adrian Edmondson ("The Young Ones"). Reflecting the cross-generational spirit - the show was directed by Cleese and AbFab's Jennifer Saunders.

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Wednesday July 1, 2009 - 1:00 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

THE SECRET POLICEMAN'S OTHER BALL (USA VERSION) (1982, 99 min)

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Wednesday July 1, 2009 - 3:00 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

THE SECRET POLICEMAN'S PRIVATE PARTS (1983, 78 min)

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Thursday July 2, 2009 - 1:00 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

THE SECRET POLICEMAN'S ROCK CONCERT (1984, 60 min)

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Thursday July 2, 2009 - 2:30 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

FROM CHILE... AN EMBRACE OF HOPE (1990, 68 min)

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Thursday July 2, 2009 - 4:00 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

THE PARIS CONCERT FOR AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL (1998, 180 min)

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Friday July 3, 2009 - 1:00 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

THE BIG THREE-O (1991, 98 min)

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Friday July 3, 2009 - 3:00 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

WE KNOW WHERE YOU LIVE, LIVE! (2001, 97 min)

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Sunday July 5, 2009 - 1:00 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

THE SECRET POLICEMAN'S ROCK CONCERT (1984, 60 min)

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Sunday July 5, 2009 - 2:30 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

FROM CHILE... AN EMBRACE OF HOPE (1990, 68 min)

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Wednesday July 8, 2009 - 1:00 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

THE SECRET POLICEMAN'S PRIVATE PARTY (1984, 60 min)

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Wednesday July 8, 2009 - 2:30 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

THE SECRET POLICEMAN'S BALL 2006 (2006, 117 min)

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Thursday July 9, 2009 - 1:00 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

REMEMBER THE SECRET POLICEMAN'S BALL? (2004, 75 min)

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Thursday July 9, 2009 - 2:30 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

THE SECRET POLICEMAN'S RETRO BALL! (1992, 40 min)

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Thursday July 9, 2009 - 3:30 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

TRIUMPH OF THE BALL (2009, 30 min)

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Thursday July 9, 2009 - 4:30 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

THINK ABOUT TOMORROW (1991, 25 min)

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Friday July 10, 2009 - 1:00 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

THE SECRET POLICEMAN'S PRIVATE PARTY! (30TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION) (2009, 60 min)

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Friday July 10, 2009 - 3:00 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

THE SECRET POLICEMAN'S BALL 2008 (2008, 120 min)

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Saturday July 11, 2009 - 1:00 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

THE SECRET POLICEMAN'S PRIVATE PARTY (1984, 60 min)

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Saturday July 11, 2009 - 2:30 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

THE SECRET POLICEMAN'S BALL 2006 (2006, 117 min)

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Sunday July 12, 2009 - 1:00 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

THE SECRET POLICEMAN'S OTHER BALL (USA VERSION) (1982, 99 min)

  More Info...


Sunday July 12, 2009 - 3:00 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

THE SECRET POLICEMAN'S PRIVATE PARTS (1983, 78 min)

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Wednesday July 15, 2009 - 1:00 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

REMEMBER THE SECRET POLICEMAN'S BALL? (2004, 75 min)

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Wednesday July 15, 2009 - 2:30 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

THE SECRET POLICEMAN'S RETRO BALL! (1992, 40 min)

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Wednesday July 15, 2009 - 3:30 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

THINK ABOUT TOMORROW (1991, 25 min)

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Thursday July 16, 2009 - 1:00 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

THE SECRET POLICEMAN'S THIRD BALL: THE MUSIC (1987, 60 min)

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Thursday July 16, 2009 - 2:30 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

HUMAN RIGHTS NOW! (1988, 180 min)

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Friday July 17, 2009 - 1:00 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

FROM CHILE... AN EMBRACE OF HOPE (1990, 68 min)

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Friday July 17, 2009 - 2:30 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

SKY AT WESTMINSTER ABBEY (1981, 85 min)

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Saturday July 18, 2009 - 1:00 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

THE PARIS CONCERT FOR AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL (1998, 180 min)

  More Info...


Sunday July 19, 2009 - 1:00 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

THE SECRET POLICEMAN'S PRIVATE PARTY! (30TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION) (2009, 60 min)

  More Info...


Sunday July 19, 2009 - 3:00 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

THE SECRET POLICEMAN'S BALL 2008 (2008, 120 min)

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Wednesday July 22, 2009 - 1:00 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

THE BIG THREE-O (1991, 98 min)

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Wednesday July 22, 2009 - 3:00 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

WE KNOW WHERE YOU LIVE, LIVE! (2001, 97 min)

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Thursday July 23, 2009 - 1:00 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

A CONSPIRACY OF HOPE (PART ONE) (1986, 360 min)

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Friday July 24, 2009 - 1:00 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

THE SECRET POLICEMAN ROCKS! (2009, 60 min)

  More Info...


Friday July 24, 2009 - 3:30 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

HUMAN RIGHTS NOW! (1988, 180 min)

  More Info...


Saturday July 25, 2009 - 1:00 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

PLEASURE AT HER MAJESTY'S (1976, 101 min)

  More Info...


Saturday July 25, 2009 - 3:00 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

THE MERMAID FROLICS (1977, 52 min)

  More Info...


Saturday July 25, 2009 - 4:00 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

THE SECRET POLICEMAN'S RARE NUGGETS! (2009, 15 min)

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Sunday July 26, 2009 - 1:00 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

THE SECRET POLICEMAN'S BALL (1979, 91 min)

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Sunday July 26, 2009 - 3:00 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

THE SECRET POLICEMAN'S OTHER BALL (ORIGINAL UK VERSION) (1981, 99 min)

  More Info...


Sunday July 26, 2009 - 5:00 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

THE SECRET POLICEMAN'S RARE NUGGETS! (2009, 15 min)

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Wednesday July 29, 2009 - 1:00 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

THE SECRET POLICEMAN'S THIRD BALL (1987, 89 min)

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Wednesday July 29, 2009 - 3:00 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

THE SECRET POLICEMAN'S BIGGEST BALL (1989, 94 min)

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Thursday July 30, 2009 - 1:00 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

A CONSPIRACY OF HOPE (PART TWO) (1986, 300 min)

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Friday July 31, 2009 - 1:00 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

PLEASURE AT HER MAJESTY'S (1976, 101 min)

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Friday July 31, 2009 - 3:00 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

THE MERMAID FROLICS (1977, 52 min)

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Friday July 31, 2009 - 4:00 pm
The Paley Center, Manhattan

THE SECRET POLICEMAN'S RARE NUGGETS! (2009, 15 min)

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