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Groundhog Day Marathon returns to Gateway Film Center

Groundhog Day Marathon returns to Gateway Film Center

614now Staff

Returning this weekend for its sixth year, its the Gateway Film Center’s Groundhog Day Marathon. Beginning Sunday , February 1st at 12:01am, GFC will run the 1993 Bill Murray comedy classic on repeat for a solid 24 hours. Surviving audience members will score free movie passes for a year. Tickets are $25 in advance, $35 at the door. Recently, I caught up with Chris Hamel, President of the Gateway Film Center.  (jj)

614now:  What percentage of people who show up for the marathon at the start actually make it the full 24 hours?  Those that don’t make it…do they usually leave in tears, a fit of rage…what does that look like?
Hamel:  Surprisingly, the majority of guests who attend the screening make it through.  In 2014 about 185 of the 250 patrons “survived” and received the year’s worth of movie tickets.

614now:  Is it true that the marathon began out of your love for the Sonny and Cher song “I Got You Babe?”
Hamel:  This is a damn lie and may god have mercy on the soul of the person who told you this.  Also, viva el Bono.

614now:  Where does Groundhog Day fall on the list of Bill Murray movies?  Above or below “Garfield: A Tale of Two Kitties?”
Hamel:  Listen, for me you can’t beat GROUNDHOG DAY.  It is number one with a bullet.  I know the kids love MEATBALLS and RAZOR’S EDGE but those are not my favorites.

614now:  Is it true that you secretly dream of being Ned Ryerson?
Hamel:  Bing!

614now:  If you and Johnny DiLoretto were starring in a Gateway Film Center adaptation of Groundhog Day, which of you would play the Bill Murray role, and which would play the Andie MacDowell part?  Why?
Hamel:  Johnny DiLoretto would want the Bill Murray role but would more likely be cast as the groundhog.  Sleeping in a cave and potentially being frightened by sunlight are things that would not require him to do much acting.


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