See the Classic Nosferatu Tonight in a Cemetery

The following is being re-posted to reflect the correct date (tonight!).

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The spooky season officially kicks off tonight with a screening of F.W. Murnau's silent 1922 classic Nosferatu--in a cemetery!

We are actually not supposed to see what was originally titled Nosferatu, eine Symphonie des Grauens ("Nosferatu: A Symphony of Horror"), because Bram Stoker's estate famously won a court order to have all prints destroyed. Find out why (and where) after the jump ...

Prana Film could not obtain rights to Stoker's novel Dracula, so Murnau took great pains to mask his unauthorized adaptation, changing names and other details, such as using the word "nosferatu" in place of "vampire."

Nonetheless, the estate of Stoker, who died in 1912 (or nine years before filming began), sued and won the order to have all Nosferatu prints disappeared. But one print survived, and the film is now considered a horror masterpiece. Bram Stoker's Dracula of 1992? Not so much.

At tonight's 8 p.m. Long Beach Cinematheque presentation, you'll get to see it that way people did back in the Roaring Twenties, with a live score performed. The Balboa Amusement Company Orchestra accompanies the flicker, as it did for the modern silent classic The Artist at a previous Long Beach Cinematheque screening.

Tonight's patrons will be making history as the first ever to view a film at historic Sunnyside Cemetery, 1095 E. Willow St., Long Beach (that we know of ... heh-heh). And you only have to scare up 10 bucks for tickets (through lbcinema.org/nosferatu).

Proceeds help the nonprofit Long Beach Cinematheque, whose fearless leader Logan Crow not only presents films in his town but downtown Santa Ana. He advises to bring low-back chairs and/or blankets tonight as well as a picnic meal if you're hungry for something other than blood.

Email: mcoker@ocweekly.com. Twitter: @MatthewTCoker. Follow OC Weekly on Twitter @ocweekly or on Facebook!


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