‘Lennon Report’ Gets Dec. 8 Westwood Premiere

John Lennon watches Yoko Ono light a cigarette at a bistro table

John Lennon and Yoko Ono enjoy a tranquil moment, captured by photographer Kishin Shinoyama just three months before his untimely death. Shinoyama was hired for the “Double Fantasy” album photo session and worked with Taschen to compile the images — many of them outtakes previously unseen — in the limited edition book “Kishin Shinoyama. John Lennon & Yoko Ono. Double Fantasy.” (Photo courtesy Taschen Books).

Director Jeremy Profe will take questions after the screening, along with Karen Tsen Lee, who plays Yoko Ono, when The Lennon Report premieres at the Crest theater Dec. 8, the 36th anniversary of the iconic songwriter’s tragic murder.

The docudrama chronicles the day Lennon died in Manhattan, focusing on the aftermath and the effort to save the singer’s life as he is treated in the Roosevelt Hospital emergency room, where he was rushed in with fatal gunshot wounds inflicted by a deranged fan. Hospital personnel were initially not aware the victim was John Lennon. The story unfolds through the eyes of a news reporter who happens to be in the hospital as Lennon is being treated and awareness breaks as to his identity.

“The film follows the surgical effort to save John’s life,” Profe told Billboard. “You never see the shooting, but you see the aftermath as the police arrive. And it goes from there, to the hospital to the confusion of not knowing who this victim is, which I think is such an important part. He didn’t arrive as John Lennon. He arrived as John Doe. And these surgeons and nurses scrambled to save his life the same as they would anyone else. And then there is this phenomenal stranger-than-fiction story of Alan Weiss, this journalist, having been in a motorcycle accident that evening and he just happened to be there to break the story, the biggest story of the year.”

The film strives for accuracy in depicting the events as they transpired, about which the filmmakers say there has been much misinformation over the years. There was a great deal of concern with tactfully handling the violent aftermath, as well as ensuring Lennon’s murderer was not further publicized; his name is not mentioned. The film was written by Profe and Walter Vincent and produced by Gabriel and Rafael Francisco.

The Lennon Report premiere is being presented by the Crest in partnership with Beatles expert Brooke Halpin, host of “Come Together With Brooke Halpin” on KBU 97.5 Radio Malibu. Halpin also hosts a monthly Beatles series at the Crest, which was in 2008 voted a City of Los Angeles Historic-Cultural Monument by the Los Angeles Cultural Heritage Commission.

Located on Westwood Boulevard, the 460-seat theater was built in 1940, and has since been upgraded to show 75mm films in addition to 35mm, and also has a 4K digital projector, Dolby Digital sound, and an entertainment stage for live shows. The theater is gearing up to present a compelling mix of programming to the Los Angeles community in 2017 and invites programmers to creatively use the space.

See the trailer here.


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