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Series & Events

Feb. 16–April 20
What makes a great film even greater? Seeing it at AFI Silver Theatre! Our programmers have rounded up an eclectic slate of critically acclaimed 2023 releases — focused on films that did not screen at AFI Silver during their initial run — to give local cinephiles another chance to see some of 2023's best cinema on the big screen. With award nominations, year-end best-of lists and hindsight as your guide, take a second look at some of the past year's most distinctive films.

May 1–30
Organized and presented by the Labor Heritage Foundation and the AFI Silver, this annual series features a wide-ranging selection of films about work, workers and the wider issues affecting workers' lives.

Union members receive Silver Cinema Club (Star level) ticket discount. Must present union card.

May 3–July 2
This series rounds up a wide range of recent digital restorations of screen classics. Here's your chance to see them back on the big screen and looking better than they have in years, thanks to the efforts of dedicated film archivists and specialty distributors.

Jan. 27—April 28
Co-presented with the 3-D Film Archive

Bob Furmanek, president and founder of the 3-D Film Archive, will introduce films on Sat. Jan. 27 and Sun. Jan 28.

All the titles screening in this program are also part of the concurrent series Fabulous ‘50s, inspired by Foster Hirsch's latest book "Hollywood and the Movies of the Fifties. The Collapse of the Studio System, the Thrill of Cinerama, and the Invasion of the Ultimate Body Snatcher — Television."

See additional titles in the Fabulous ‘50s lineup here.

All tickets just $8!

Join us for a new monthly late-night series showcasing classic, soon-to-be classic and should-be-classic horror, sci-fi, action, fantasy and cross-genre gems hand-picked by the AFI Silver programming team. We promise deep cuts — sometimes literally — underrated classics, sneak peeks, new restorations and all-time favorites up on the big screen, the way late-night movies are meant to be seen!

Monthly selections will be announced on an ongoing basis.

Feb. 2—May 2
Celebrate the centennial of Columbia Pictures with some of the iconic Hollywood studio's best-known classics and unappreciated gems.

May 3—July 11
Celebrate the centennial of Columbia Pictures with some of the iconic Hollywood studio's best-known classics and unappreciated gems.

Feb. 2—May 2
Film historian Foster Hirsch will introduce films on Fri, Feb. 2, Sat, Feb. 3 and Sun, Feb. 4. Hirsch's latest book "Hollywood and the Movies of the Fifties: The Collapse of the Studio System, the Thrill of Cinerama, and the Invasion of the Ultimate Body Snatcher — Television" will be available for sale and signing. 

April 4—May 1
Author Tom Fallows will introduce screenings of NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD and DAWN OF THE DEAD and sign copies of his book "George A. Romero's Independent Cinema: Horror, Industry, Economics" on Thursday, April 4 and Friday, April 12, respectively. The book will also be available for sale — while supplies last! — throughout the series.

March 7–April 28
We’ve teamed up once again with Silver Spring-based author, producer and screenwriter George Pelecanos to present a selection of classic Westerns, curated by Pelecanos, who will introduce select shows.

May 3–July 11
Saddle up for a fistful of iconic film scores at AFI Silver! Maestro Ennio Morricone (1928–2020) produced over 500 movie soundtracks during his nearly 65-year career, being honored with two Academy Awards® and crafting genre-defining scores that would influence and inspire generations of film composers to come. From his early work in television, through his collaborations with directing greats Sergio Leone, Pier Paolo Pasolini, Dario Argento, Lina Wertmüller, Bernardo Bertolucci, Giuseppe Tornatore, Brian De Palma, Terrence Malick, John Carpenter and Quentin Tarantino, Morricone mastered the art of creating instantly recognizable scores, expertly attuned to each of the vast array of genres and films he turned his hand to. Inspired by Tornatore's recent documentary ENNIO, this 35-title series explores the breadth of Morricone's career, from his best-known work perfecting the sound of the Spaghetti Western with Leone's Dollars Trilogy to his celebrated Hollywood output and everything – and we mean everything – in between, including his first feature score in the rarely seen 1961 comedy THE FASCIST, restorations of seldom-screened films by Argento, Valerio Zurlini, and Giuliano Montaldo, a new 4K restoration of DAYS OF HEAVEN, plus THE HATEFUL EIGHT in glorious 70mm.

Presented with the support of the Italian Cultural Institute (IIC) in Washington and Fare Cinema. Special thanks to Cinecittà, Intramovies, Movietime and Unidis Jolly Films.

March 31–April 29
"If Africans do not tell their own stories, Africa will soon disappear," declared Ousmane Sembène (1923–2007), the Senegalese cinematic revolutionary whose career-long project to illuminate the lives of the marginalized made him the continent's most influential and widely acclaimed director. A manual laborer turned union activist turned acclaimed writer turned filmmaker, Sembène saw cinema as the ultimate vehicle for his searing social critiques, delivering caustic indictments of colonialism, ruling-class corruption, religion and the patriarchy in landmark works like BLACK GIRL (recently named one of the greatest films of all time in Sight and Sound magazine's poll), MANDABI and XALA. Blending elements of social realism, expressionism, satire, folklore and the West African griot tradition, his radical, empathetic films created a new cinematic language of resistance. (Note courtesy of Janus Films.)

An ongoing slate of limited engagements, updated weekly.

Presenting an exciting selection of filmed performances ranging from one-of-a-kind concerts to stage productions from the National Theatre. Upcoming engagements will be announced on an ongoing basis.

May 5–July 10
Co-presented with the Smithsonian's National Museum of Asian Art and National Gallery of Art.

Prolific and endlessly inventive, Korean filmmaker Hong Sangsoo has directed 31 features in almost as many years, cementing a reputation as one of Korea's reigning auteurs alongside other internationally known greats like Bong Joon Ho and Park Chan-wook — on a much smaller budget. While his oeuvre ostensibly deals with mundane social situations and the micro-dramas — often fueled by alcohol, ego and desire — that surround them, Hong's self-reflexive, playful use of story structure, incorporating repetitions, variations and films-within-films, lends an air of the surreal to his otherwise observational realism, allowing for constant commentary on the artistic process itself at the same time as its pleasing results unfold before our eyes. Presented with the Smithsonian's National Museum of Asian Art and National Gallery of Art, this retrospective showcases 30 of Hong's 31 films, including his rarely seen 1996 feature debut, THE DAY A PIG FELL INTO THE WELL, which screens at AFI Silver on July 10.

Generous support for this retrospective is provided by the National Museum of Korea.

May 3–9

May the Fourth Be With You!

A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away, George Lucas created a fantasy adventure that would change filmmaking forever. Lucas combined an old-fashioned appreciation for classic storytelling, drawing on the mythological structure of fables and legends, plus the rousing adventure and action emphasis of Hollywood Westerns, war movies, swashbucklers and serials, with the most advanced and innovative screen special effects work yet seen. STAR WARS became a worldwide phenomenon and launched a movie and merchandising franchise that would become the standard against which all others would be measured — often imitated but never equaled.

April 5–May 2

Korean writer-director Bong Joon Ho made history in 2020 with PARASITE, the first South Korean film to receive an Academy Award® in any category and the first film not in the English language to win the coveted Oscar® for Best Picture (in addition to winning Best Director, Best International Feature and Best Original Screenplay). But Bong's magical mix of pitch-black comedy, sharp social satire, deep compassion and unnerving honesty has been there from the beginning, applied unsparingly across a spectrum of genres and within works that always defy easy definition. Covering everything from small-town police procedurals to sci-fi eco-satires, Bong's body of work transcends genre. Like PARASITE, his earlier features — all included in this retrospective — are spectacular to look at, provocative and poignant, carrying profound observations about the state of humanity, tempered by moments of absurdity, laughter and sheer delight. Jump in, and welcome to the Bong Hive.