Movie The Fabelmans Steven Spielberg (2022)
Little Sammy Fabelmans (Mateo Zoryon Francis-DeFord) attends a screening of Under the Biggest Big Top in the World with his parents (Michelle Williams and Paul Dano) in a crowded movie theater. While the theater in question is supposed to be in Haddon Township, New Jersey, the scene was shot in the legendary Orpheum Theatre.
Orpheum Theatre
Orpheum Theatre by Andreas Praefcke. Wikimedia.

“Movies are dreams, dolly, that you never forget.”

Mitzi Fabelman (Michelle Williams)

A vibrant tribute to cinema, The Fabelmans allows Steven Spieberg to tell his own story. A story that begins in a small town in the state of New Jersey, in a neighborhood movie theater. Nevertheless, the director chose to reconstruct this defining episode of his childhood in and around Los Angeles. So the first scene, when Sammy Fabelman (Mateo Zoryon Francis-DeFord) discovers his first film on the big screen, was produced in the Orpheum Theatre in the City of Angels.

A mythical cinema

Of course, Steven Spieberg had to make up the Orpheum Theatre so as not to betray its true location. However, the director has chosen to take advantage of the prestigious architecture of the cinema to give the introduction of his feature film a special aura. This is not the first time that the seventh art highlights this illustrious room.

An autobiographical film

Steven Spielberg has chosen to work again with screenwriter Tony Kushner to write the script for The Fabelmans. The two men previously collaborated on Munich, Lincoln and West Side Story. Nevertheless, for Tony Kushner, the work was particularly simple this time, as he explained to Indie Wire: “We wrote three days a week, four hours a day, and finished the script in two months. This is the scenario that I completed the fastest. It was great.


The Fabelmans is the 36th film by Steven Spielberg.

The Fabelmans scène d'introduction
The Fablemans scène du cinéma. Tous droits réservés : Amblin Entertainment/Amblin Partners/Universal Pictures.

The Orpheum Theatre

Opened on February 15, 1926, this movie theater was the fourth and last on the Orpheum vaudeville circuit to open in Los Angeles.

Named after Orpheus, this illustrious cinema has a Beaux-Arts style facade designed by architect G. Albert Lansburgh. Known for its Mighty Wurlitzer organ, one of three still functioning pipe organs in Southern California, it has hosted burlesque stars like the Marx Brothers and Will Rogers. Although it has mainly focused on showing films, it has also served as a concert hall, with artists such as Little Richard, Aretha Franklin and Stevie Wonder. Avril Lavigne, Guns N’ Roses, Michael Jackson and Taylor Swift are among the musicians to have shot a music video there. He appears in the films Last Action Hero, Transformers, The Shape of Water and Annette.

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By Gilles Rolland

Tuesday, March 14, 2023

Passionné de cinéma, de rock and roll, de séries TV et de littérature. Rédacteur de presse et auteur des livres Le Heavy Metal au cinéma, Paroles de fans Guns N' Roses, Paroles de fans Rammstein et Welcome to my Jungle : 100 albums rock et autres anecdotes dépareillées. Adore également voyager à la recherche des lieux les plus emblématiques de la pop culture.

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