Actress Patty McCormack
has played many roles in her long career, including numerous credits in film, on Broadway, and in television (with over 250 television appearances). Most recently, she played Pat Nixon, wife of President Richard M. Nixon, in the Oscar-nominated Ron Howard film, FROST/NIXON
. And on Friday, May 29th, Patty McCormack is coming to Palm Springs to celebrate another of her roles - one of her first, in fact. It was a role she originally played in the Broadway play, THE BAD SEED
. As Rhoda Penmark, McCormack gave what is widely considered one of the finest performances by a child in the history of American entertainment. Later, she recreated the same role for the movie adaptation of , THE BAD SEED
, and received Oscar and Golden Globe nominations for her performance.
McCormack’s visit to Palm Springs comes as part of the 2009 Arthur Lyons Film Noir Film Festival, which is taking place at the Camelot Theatres from Thursday, May 28th through Sunday, May 31st. “At age 8, I was certainly one of the youngest Film Noir Femme Fatales,” McCormack recalls. “But in terms of pure evil, I think my character, Rhoda Penmark, could give anyone a run for their money.”
And indeed, movie buffs agree. When it comes to evil children in the movies, , THE BAD SEED
’s little Rhoda Penmark, played expertly by McCormack, ranks at the top of pretty much everyone’s list. One reviewer says “Not even Freddie Krueger had the ability to scare like tiny McCormack....” Another says “If you’re going to talk evil children (in movies), then you have to give props to one of the baddest of the bunch: Patty McCormack as little Rhoda Penmark.”
, THE BAD SEED
consistently outranks more recent movies (like THE EXORCIST, THE OMEN, CHILDREN OF THE CORN and THE GOOD SON
) for its characterization of a child villain. Strong compliments for a movie that was made in 1956 during the Eisenhower era.
You can catch Patty McCormack in , THE BAD SEED
, and in person, during the Ninth Annual Arthur Lyons Film Noir Film Festival on Friday, May 29th. The film screens at 1:00pm, and Ms. McCormack will be available after the screening for questions and/or to sign autographs.
THE BAD SEED (1956)
This American Gothic classic remains one of most darkly shocking movies of all time. A well-bred Mother (Nancy Kelly) with an absentee husband (William Hopper) discovers that their loving daughter (Patty McCormack) might have taken after her murdering grandmother, and be dangerously sociopathic. Startling discoveries are piled upon horrifying occurrences in a film that was nominated for four Oscars and might well have provided impetus for family planning during the Eisenhower Administration!
About the Arthur Lyons’ Film Noir Film Festival:
Founded in 2000 by the late mystery author and Palm Springs community leader, Arthur Lyons
, the popular Film Noir festival includes an eclectic mixture of prestigious and obscure black and white “B” movies from the classic film noir period. The Arthur Lyons’ Film Noir Film Festival
is presented by the Palm Springs Cultural Center
- a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, that was established to encourage the development of the cultural arts in the Coachella Valley with a specific focus in the areas of film, fine art, and community festivals. The Center is dedicated to advancing education, to nurturing community-wide participation in the cultural arts, and to sponsoring scholarship awards for deserving individuals.