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Star of Classic Horror "The Birds" Attends Virginia Film Festival

By: Ruth Morton Email
By: Ruth Morton Email
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November 8, 2013

A Hollywood legend lit up the Virginia Film Festival.

Tippi Hedren attended the festival Friday night.

The star of Alfred Hitchcock's "The Birds" came to the Virginia Film Festival for a sold-out screening of the movie, released fifty years ago. The screening was also part of a new partnership between the Virginia Film Festival and the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts.

She participated in a discussion of the classic horror afterwards.

Earlier Friday, Hedren discussed the film with UVa students. She said that, during the discussion, she realized the reason for its lasting legacy.

"It has an amazing life and I think that answer came when one of the students said, 'what do you think about the ending of the The Birds?' I said, I think that's the attraction of the film. Because of the fact that everybody is able to use his own brain to make their own ending to this film," said Hedren.

Hedren said she was struck by Charlottesville's beauty and likes the movie-centric nature of the festival.

"Everywhere, no matter where you look, it's beautiful. It's absolutely beautiful. I've just been blown away by this, this city. And I love going to festivals and they're all different. And I find this to be a very serious film festival, which is delightful. And it seems to me the people are really interested in the movies," said Hedren.

The event was part of a new series. The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts (VMFA) partnered with the Virginia Film Festival to celebrate movie costumes. The festival screened "The Birds" and, on Sunday morning, will screen "All That Heaven Allows."

Gweneth West, Head of Costume Design at UVa's Department of Drama, spoke before "The Birds" on Friday night West explained the collaboration and the meanings of some of the wardrobe in the story. She will moderate a discussion after "All That Heaven Allows."

The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts' "Hollywood Costume" exhibition starts Saturday, November 9 and runs through February 17, 2014.

On Saturday, Hedren will go to Richmond for a reprise showing of "The Birds." West will lead a question and answer session with Hedren afterwards.

The green, two-piece dress Hedren wore in "The Birds" will be one of the costumes on display at VMFA's exhibit.

The festival continues Saturday and Sunday. Saturday features the free Family Day starting at 9 a.m. at UVa. For the details of that event, visit the Virginia Film Festival's website.

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