Happy 100th Anniversary to PETER PAN and J. M. Barrie!

Today, December 27, 2004, marks the 100th anniversary of the first performance of J. M. Barrie’s classic play, PETER PAN, at the Duke of York’s Theatre in London. One hundred years later, the characters of Peter and Wendy and the villainous Captain Hook live on as permanent parts of our collective memory. Many movie theatres in London are celebrating the occasion with free showings of FINDING NEVERLAND (thanks for the word, Gilbert’s Girl), while movie theaters in a dozen major cities in the U.S. are donating the proceeds of special FINDING NEVERLAND screenings today to the Peter Pan Children’s Fund, a group supporting children’s hospitals (thanks for the information, JD’s First Mate). J. M. Barrie, of course, donated the royalties from PETER PAN to the Great Ormond Street Hospital for Sick Children, a bequest that continues to this day.

This seems an appropriate time for the Zone to salute the memory of Sir James Matthew Barrie and express our appreciation for the gifts his imagination has given us . . . including now not only the original PETER PAN but this year’s marvelous FINDING NEVERLAND. Asked by Entertainment Tonight to comment on PETER PAN, Johnny Depp replied: “It’s a masterpiece of imagination. It’s one of those rare, perfect things in the world that will always be with us.” Now we can add Johnny’s performance as PETER PAN’s creator to that list of “rare, perfect things” that continue to delight us.

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