Tuesday was our day of all the Hollywood Glam for the Million Dollar Arm Event!
Following the Disney Million Dollar Arm Pitching contest and the Red Carpet Walk and Party it was time to see the premiere!
Million Dollar Arm Premiere at El Capitan Theater
Sitting in the El Capitan Theater was an incredibly humbling experience. There is history here.
The thought that I was sitting in the same theater that opened 3 days and 88 years before I sat in the second row was pretty awesome…it was given life, opening day, May 3, 1926 (the same year the world welcomed my grandma!) as “Hollywood’s First Home of Spoken Drama”.
Charlot’s Revue was the feature back then. This night. May 6, 2014. It was all about Million Dollar Arm.
We walked by El Capitan many times on our adventure. In fact, Jimmy Kimmel Live is filmed next door. The building itself is beautiful. It was the perfect setting for Million Dollar Arm as El Capitan originally featured an East Indian interior.
In the first ten years of opening, El Capitan showed the movies that made legends: Clark Gable and Joan Fontaine to name two.
The depression took an economic toll on the population as well as El Capitan. Fewer productions were seen. Then something amazing happened. Orson Welles could not find a theater willing to feature the screening of Citizen Kane. El Capitan was game and in 1941 the movie’s world premiere was held here.
A year later, El Capitan was restored and given a new name, The Hollywood Paramount Theater.
Fast forward to 1991 when Disney bought the property, restored it with millions of dollars of renovation and held the premiere for The Rockateer here, under the new name El Capitan Theater.
LA Dodgers Organist Plays at the El Capitan Theater for Million Dollar Arm Event
Today, the theater features a giant Wurlitzer Theater organ. It’s the original from San Francisco’s Fox Theatre (1929). This organ brought history to center stage as Nancy Bea, Los Angeles Dodgers Organist, played it for the theater guests.
Nancy Bea auditioned at an exhibition game between the Dodgers and the USC Trojans on February 14, 1988 and has played for them every season since. Tonight she played for us.
The organ and Nancy Bea set the theme for the Million Dollar Arm premiere as “Take Me Out to the Ball Game” played through the theater and the organ and her raised from the stage!
Roger “Peanut Man” Owens Tosses a Perfect Peanut Pitch at El Capitan Theater
No ball game is complete without peanuts and the man calling “Peanuts! Get your peanuts!” That man tonight was the legendary Roger “Peanut Man” Owens. He’s been pitching peanuts for 55 years–and a few months. Most of that time with the LA Dodgers.
A baseball pitcher in high school, Owens, fit in well with the sport. He tosses the peanuts behind his back, under his leg and out in to the crowd. Every toss is a display of Owens’ trademark. He may be the only pitcher in Major League Baseball to pitch a perfect game every time..rarely does his throw miss it’s intended mark!
Million Dollar Arm on the Big Screen at El Capitan Theater for the Premiere
Then Roger Owens stopped throwing those peanuts. Nancy Bea and her organ were lowered into the stage, the lights went out and the curtain was raised. It was time to watch Million Dollar Arm one more time in a historic theater with Hall of Fame Athletes, A-List Celebrities and some of the most amazing bloggers I’ve ever met!
Million Dollar Arm opens everywhere May 16th–and will be available in select theaters for a sneak peak Saturday, May 10th!