Lando Calrissian, Luke Skywalker and Trapper John Save California’s Parks

Mark Hammill, Billy Dee Williams, Elliot Gould and others appear at a Los Angeles film event to raise money for state parks. Come see RETURN OF THE JEDI, M*A*S*H, PLANET OF THE APES and more!

And for movie fans California parks mean even more. Many of the best Hollywood films are shot in California parks, and I have made a habit of seeking out filming locations in the parks (guided by Harry Medved’s really awesome book Hollywood Escapes; if you live in or plan on visiting SoCal this is the ultimate movie dweeb guidebook). So it’s cool to see Hollywood trying to give back a little; this weekend is the second annual California State Parks Starring In Hollywood Films Festival (that’s a mouthful). It’s a fundraiser for the parks that features some great films shot in them.

Like what, you ask? How about Return of the Jedi, shot in Grizzly Creeks Redwoods State Park and Jedidiah Smith Redwoods State Park? How about M*A*S*H*, shot in Malibu Creek State Park? How about Spartacus, shot at the San Simeon State Historic Monument? How about Planet of the Motherfucking Apes, shot in Malibu Creek State Park, and whose climactic and immortal beach scene was shot at Point Dume State Park?

Those films will play the festival, and Billy Dee Williams, Mark Hammill and Elliot Gould will be among the folks appearing and doing Q&As. This is pretty awesome, if I may say so myself.

What are the details? Here are the details. See great movies! Support great parks!

Saturday, Nov. 6:
The Paramount Theater, The Studios at Paramount, 5555 Melrose Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90038.

  • 1:30 p.m.: “Star Wars: Episode VI Return of the Jedi,” introduced by Billy Dee Williams and followed by audience Q&A with Mark Hamill.
  • 4:30 p.m.: “MASH,” the 1970 film. Elliott Gould will introduce the film and follow it with an audience Q&A.
  • 8 p.m.: “M*A*S*H” TV series, two episodes, followed by Q&A with actors William Christopher (Father Mulcahy) and Jeff Maxwell (Igor, the Cook), Charles S. Dubin (director), Gene Reynolds (co-creator), Burt Metcalfe (producer), Dr. Walter Dishell (medical advisor), and Ken Levine (writer).

Sunday, Nov. 7:
The Darryl F. Zanuck Theater, Twentieth Century Fox Studios, 10201 W. Pico Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90064.

  • 1 p.m.: “Spartacus” (1960). Introduction by film archivist Robert O’Neil, who restored the film.
  • 5 p.m.: “Planet of the Apes” (1968), followed by Q&A with production designer William Creber, actor Lou Wagner (Lucius) and Tom Hanks’ long-time make-up artist Daniel Striepeke (“Forrest Gump,” “Saving Private Ryan”), moderated by “Hollywood Escapes” co-author Harry Medved

Film Series Tickets: Single-screening tickets: $10 for adults, $8 for children 12 and under. Three-screening passes: $25 adults, $18 children. Free popcorn and parking. To purchase tickets for screenings:; (877) 663-0566.