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This now-legendary film all began when Trent Harris stumbled upon the earnestly charming “Groovin’ Gary” hamming it up in a TV station parking lot as Harris tested a camera.

Accepting an invitation to see Gary perform in his hometown Beaver, he recorded it on a lark but soon realized he’d found something special. All the pieces were there: a talent show, mortician-applied make-up, a dizzying Olivia Newton-John song, and most importantly Gary – a small town kid dolled up as the pop queen, aching for a chance to get on the tube. Reworking it into fiction some years later with a pre-Spicoli Sean Penn (doing a spot-on impression) and then Crispin Glover, Harris ultimately realized the three versions worked wonderfully side-by-side. Traded on bootleg tapes for years, The Beaver Trilogy continues to be hard to see, becoming even more sought-after following a segment on "This American Life."

Director: Trent Harris. 83 min. 2000. BluRay.

Part of the Trent Harris series.

Tickets: $12, Film Club Member: $8.

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