Saturday, August 24, 2013


Current host of Saturday Night at the Movies, Thom Ernst
As someone who remembers when Saturday Night at the Movies premiered on OECA (Ontario Educational Communications Authority, now TV Ontario) back in 1974, I find it hard to read Toronto Star entertainment columnist Peter Howell's article on the demise of the long-running program.

I remember looking forward to the movie picks for the week, plus the extras, like interviews with actors and behind-the-scenes people, and the serialized Republic serials (like The Mysterious Doctor Satan). One of the major perks of watching SNATM was the show's host: Elwy Yost, the one and only.

What this means is perhaps I should finally grab that digital box converter for my analogue television, so I can watch the final installment of Saturday Night at the Movies. No doubt the TVO website will upload the program a day or two after, like they do with other fare they show, but tradition, imagined or otherwise, would dictate that a farewell program such as this must be seen live -- to bookend an outstanding series.

Last November when the network announced that they would be eliminating Saturday Night at the Movies at the end of its 2012-13 season, their news release contained a brilliant headline worthy of dialogue from an Ed Wood flick: "“TVO Announces Plan That Looks to Future." No! What, as opposed to the Past? That, ladies and gentlemen, may sum up perfectly the mentality at TVO these days.

Saturday Night at the Movies, when going to the movies meant staying in: Howell

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