Does this poster look familiar to you?
If you lived in Edina during the mid-1970s, it should. After all, the Harold and Maude movie poster hung in the Westgate Theater window for more than two years, from mid-1972 to June 1974. Yes, that's a record-breaking 1,957 showings. (For more on that and the Sunnyside and France movie theater in Morningside, see our previous post here.)
Steven Johnson worked at the theater and got the poster when the movie finally closed. The poster shows some age, but as Steve pointed out it was in use for much longer than the average movie run. He speculated that the poster may have first been on display at the Suburban World theater in Minneapolis when the movie opened in 1971.
This poster with simple text on a white background is the original poster. Later versions featured drawings or photos of stars Ruth Gordon and Bud Cort, who attended anniversary screenings at the Westgate. (Note that the movie rating predates the current system; instead of being rated PG, it's GP.)
Steve brought in the poster with his friend and fellow Harold and Maude fan Randy Greene, who helped organize the recent showing at the historic Heights Theater. Despite having seen the movie for many of those 1,957 showings as an employee, Steve still appreciates the cult classic.
Thanks you to both Steve and Randy for choosing the Edina Historical Society as a permanent home for the poster. They also brought in a group of newspaper clippings and ads that will be housed in our research files.
Do you have anything with an Edina connection that you think belongs in the Edina Historical Society collection? Please contact me for information about donating. We're a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization; the value of your donation may be tax deductible as allowed by law. The Society does not assign value.
A great majority of our items do not have a huge cash value, but they are priceless in terms of telling the history of our community. As I always say, we can't order Edina history from a catalog; our collection is a result of many years of donations from community-minded people.
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Jennifer Adam is the Executive Director of the Edina Historical Society. She welcomes your contributions. Comment on a post or send an email (see below). Traditional mail, of course, can also be sent to:
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Help us bring you Edina history with this web site by becoming a member or donating today. Click on the link to our GiveMN.org site to make a donation with a credit card. The Edina Historical Society is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that depends on contributions to continue operation.