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All-Bacon Diet

A new AMC multiplex in Burbank will debut with a benefit and screening of 16 films by the actor, who will take part in the event.

June 18, 2003|Patricia Ward Biederman | Times Staff Writer

Think of it as 16 degrees of Kevin Bacon.

As part of the venue's premiere, every auditorium at AMC's new theater complex in Burbank will feature a movie with the 44-year-old actor today. The film festival and party will benefit Earth Communications Office, an environmental action group.

Bacon will appear at the benefit, called "Six Degrees" -- an allusion to a game in which players try to link other actors to Bacon based on the movies they have co-starred in. The name of the game is itself an allusion to the John Guare play "Six Degrees of Separation," based on the notion that any individual is only six personal contacts away from any other.

AMC will officially open its new Burbank 16 on Friday. But tonight it will be all Bacon all the time.

Movies to be screened include "Diner," "National Lampoon's Animal House," "Footloose," "JFK," "Friday the 13th," "Flatliners," "The Big Picture," "A Few Good Men," "Murder in the First," "Apollo 13," "My Dog Skip," and "Trapped."

Earth Communications Office spokesman Paul Williams said Bacon was chosen because he heads the nonprofit group's campaign on global warming. Called Climate Star, the campaign features images of Bacon and other celebrities. "In a nutshell, it's celebrities in steamy poses with a little bit of information about global warming," Williams said.

Bacon and his wife, actress Kyra Sedgwick, were the first actors to pose nearly nude for the campaign. Others participating include actors Esai Morales and Jane Kaczmarek, along with the latter's husband, Bradley Whitford.

In a prepared statement, Bacon said he was attracted to the project when he learned that "all 10 of the warmest years on record have occurred in the last 15 years. It hits home that our actions as people are seriously affecting the planet."

"We never had a formal launch for the campaign, so that's what this event will do," Williams said. The photo campaign began running in national magazines in April.

Sedgwick is scheduled to join Bacon at tonight's event, which is also expected to attract Christopher Guest, Daniel Stern, Chris Penn and other Bacon co-stars.

The benefit will start at 6 p.m. with a block party, with live entertainment, at the new theater complex at 125 E. Palm Ave. in downtown Burbank.

At 8 p.m., ticket holders can see any of the 16 Kevin Bacon films being shown, "and you get popcorn and a free drink," Williams said.

The Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon game was developed in 1994 by what a Louisville magazine writer described as "a trio of Pennsylvania college boys with too much time on their hands and a bottle of Southern Comfort .... Although never a big box-office draw, Bacon has been in a significant number of ensemble films from 'Diner' to 'Apollo 13.' And the boys discovered that if you use Bacon as an end point, you can link him in six degrees or less to almost any other performer."

Williams said people may not remember that Bacon was in some of the films to be shown tonight. "He was one of the kids who got murdered in 'Friday the 13th,' " he pointed out. Paul Shefrin, a spokesman for AMC in Los Angeles, said that the theater chain and the environmental group have a long-standing relationship. AMC theaters have screened the nonprofit's public-service spots for more than a decade.

Tickets for the event are $25. For information, call (888) 663-3278.

The Boys & Girls Clubs of Burbank will also benefit, Shefrin said.

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