ALMOST 60 years since their last film was released, the popularity of comedy duo Laurel and Hardy shows no sign of waning.
The Rex Cinema in Elland has increased its Laurel and Hardy film night from an occasional tribute to a much-anticipated annual event.
Fans flock to the Rex from all over the region to enjoy the spectacle of two comic geniuses in action. This year’s Laurel and Hardy night is on Saturday, April 9 and the bill will include the feature film ‘Blockheads’ and three shorts - known as ‘two reelers’ - ‘Habeas Corpus’, ‘Hog Wild’ and ‘Another Fine Mess’.
Stan Laurel and Oliver Hardy made 73 20-minute ‘two reelers’ and 26 feature films between 1926 - when films were still silent - and 1952 when their final film ‘Atoll K’ was released.
Charles Morris, Rex proprietor, said: “They were without doubt the screen’s most enduring comedy duo and the films selected for this year’s show represent the 10-year period when they were at the peak of their career.
“Our Laurel and Hardy nights have maintained their popularity since our first one in 1994. In the last two or three years there has been so much enthusiasm that we have decided to hold them annually.
“We get members of the Laurel and Hardy ‘tents’, as the fan club is known, coming from far away and some dress up in all their regalia. The atmosphere of 300 people laughing in unison at the antics of these two clowns really makes the night.
“We also hope to have some Laurel and Hardy memorabilia on sale as in previous years and our resident organist Mildred Sutcliffe will be playing in the interval.”
According to Mr Morris, the appeal of Laurel and Hardy crosses all ages and it’s not unusual to have two or three generations settling down to enjoy the madcap fun on screen.
Laurel and Hardy night starts at 7.30pm and tickets are £5. They are available from the box office or by post in advance with a stamped addressed envelope from the Rex Cinema, Coronation Street, Elland HX5 0DF. Cheques should be made payable to Rex Cinema (Elland) Ltd.