Film series celebrates beloved actor Jack Oakie’s life and legacy.
The College of the Canyons Foundation will celebrate the legacy of Hollywood performer Jack Oakie and his wife, Victoria, by presenting the second film in the College of the Canyons Oakie Film Series, “The Great Dictator.”
Directed by and also starring Charlie Chaplin, the 1940 film mockingly satirized European fascism at a time when the United States had not yet entered the Second World War. Oakie’s role as Il Duce of Bacteria earned him an Academy Award nomination for Best Supporting Actor. “The Great Dictator” will be screened at 4 p.m. November 13, in the College of the Canyons cinema room, located on the Valencia campus in Hasley Hall room 101.
Community members are also invited to a pre-screening reception beginning at 3:30 p.m., when they will have the opportunity to meet trustees from The Jack Oakie and Victoria Horne Oakie Charitable Foundation Trust to discuss Oakie’s work and learn more about the Foundation. A brief question and answer period will follow the screening.
2009 marks the third year The Jack Oakie and Victoria Horne Oakie Charitable Foundation Trust has awarded $10,000 in scholarships to students studying the Fine and Performing Arts at College of the Canyons.
“The College of the Canyons Foundation is very grateful to the Jack Oakie and Victoria Horne Oakie Charitable Trust Foundation for its support of our students,” said Michele Edmonson, College of the Canyons Foundation Assistant Director of Development. “We are extremely happy to have an opportunity to meet the trustees who have made these gifts available and to celebrate the Oakie legacy through this fun film series.”
Students applying for an Oakie scholarship award must watch a Jack Oakie or Victoria Horne Oakie film and critique it from the perspective of a scriptwriter, director, actor, comedian, singer, and/or dancer.
Hosted in partnership with the college’s Division of Fine and Performing Arts and the COC cinema department, the College of the Canyons Oakie Film Series has been designed to expand awareness of Jack Oakie and his contributions to the performing arts.
Oakie was a remarkably prolific actor during a turbulent time in American history, appearing in 87 films. He worked steadily in the film industry from 1927 through the 1940s, and was on contract at Paramount Studios from 1929 to 1934. In addition to film, his career encompassed stage, radio, and television.
Both Jack and Victoria were actors and long-time residents of the San Fernando Valley. They were known as philanthropists and humanitarians throughout their lives. Continuing their legacy of giving, The Oakie Charitable Foundation trustees remain dedicated to the couple’s wishes: “Give the money to the kids.”
For more information about the College of the Canyons Oakie Film Series please contact the COC Foundation at (661) 362-3737.