South Pasadena Library Honors Ray Bradbury with Free Screening of “It Came From Outer Space”

By Steve Fjeldsted, South Pasadena Library Director: The Fifties sci-fi classic It Came From Outer Space will be screened on Thursday, October 18 at 7 p.m. in the South Pasadena Library Community Room.  The remarkable, highly influential film, Ray Bradbury’s first, was released in the brand new 3-D technology to theaters in 1953.

The Library will be screening the flat, non 3-D version,’ but it will be projected onto a giant film festival type screen and professional sound equipment will be used.

Doors will open at 6:30 p.m. for the event which will also showcase a mini-exhibit of Bradbury-related artwork., courtesy of Ray’s friends and associates Robert Kerr, Dave Marchant, and John King Tarpinian who will also offer brief, insightful introductory remarks before the film that was released in 1953 when the iconic author had just burst into public adulation with his The Martian Chronicles and Fahrenheit 451.

The Library Community Room is located at 1115 El Centro Street in South Pasadena.

No tickets or reservations are necessary and refreshments will be served.  An opportunity drawing for door prizes including Bradbury paperbacks and Mars and Milky Way candy bars will be conducted.

The event is presented by the South Pasadena Public Library and the Friends of the South Pasadena Public Library with special thanks to 210eastsound, Videotheque, and Movie Licensing USA. For more information, please call 626 403-7350 or check

It Came from Outer Space marked Bradbury’s initial foray into writing for movies. Ray wrote a story treatment entitled “The Meteor” and submitted it to Universal which hired him to expand it and he delivered a finished screenplay. According to Bradbury in his anthology They Came from Outer Space, he wrote it for the “grand sum of $3000.”

Portrait of Ray Bradbury, taken September 10, 2009

The success of It Came from Outer Space, Universal’s first 3-D film, led Bradbury to pen other screenplays, including Moby Dick –co-written with John Huston and an Oscar®-winner in 1956, as well as film versions of his own works. The South Pasadena Library has screened many of these and has been continuously developing its Bradbury collection since his passing. It now consists of more than 100 checkout books and DVDs and the special ‘reference only’ collection for the Ray Bradbury Conference Room has received about 200 very special donations that are starting to appear in its locked cases.

Dave Marchant of Alhambra, a friend and associate of Bradbury’s, once a resident in South Pasadena, met the author at a library more than 20 years ago. Marchant was already an avid sci-fi fan who knew and admired Forrest Ackerman and George Clayton Johnson. Dave had attended Cal State LA and was writing stories that eventually were inspired by Bradbury’s encouragement. Marchant at times “chauffeured” Bradbury to his appearances at bookstores and libraries, becoming a serious Bradbury collector in the process. Today, Dave Marchant is a frequent user of the South Pasadena Library and has donated more than 100 rare books, DVDs, audios, press kits, posters, and more to the library in honor his friend and mentor.

Free parking is available at the Mission-Meridian Parking Garage, located at 805 Meridian Avenue after noon adjacent to the Metro Gold Line Station, only one block from the Library.