Majestic Theatre to host ‘Phantom of the Paradise’ screening to celebrate its 50th anniversary


The Majestic served as the shooting location of the eponymous Paradise club in this cult classic musical.

DALLAS — There’s a once-in-a-lifetime movie screening opportunity coming to Dallas in October, as the cult classic film Phantom of the Paradise will be played at the very theater much of it was shot at, The Majestic.

The Majestic served as the eponymous Paradise club, where much of the movie takes place. The legendary, century-old Dallas theater had once closed in 1972. But in December of 1973, local music fans packed the venue as extras to serve as the audience for the various musical performances in the movie. 

Phantom of the Paradise is part-Phantom of the Opera, part-Faust, with a little bit of The Picture of Dorian Grey mixed in, focusing on an aspiring songwriter, Winslow Leach, who becomes disfigured, and “sells his soul for rock n’ roll,” becoming the in-house composer for the movie’s antagonist, Swan, and haunting his Paradise concert hall. 

Legendary music producer Paul Williams, who has won an Academy Award and a Grammy for his work on the 1976 version of A Star is Born, worked on the film He also produced music for movies like Bugsy Malone and The Muppet Movie, and wrote songs for bands and artists like Three Dog Night, The Monkees and The Carpenters.

Williams himself will also be in attendance for the event, where he will provide an introduction and take part in a Q&A session following the film screening.

Even if you’ve never heard of Phantom of the Paradise, you know its influence. The horror comedy musical was filmed by legendary director Brian De Palma, who would go on to direct such classic films as Carrie, Scarface and Carlito’s Way, among others. The 1974 film can be felt everywhere, even in 1977’s Star Wars — the voice box Darth Vader uses to speak was lifted directly from the voice box the Phantom in Phantom of the Paradise uses. The helmet the phantom wears would serve as the inspiration for the helmets that Daft Punk wore. And for any anime fans, the design of the character Femto in Berserk was lifted almost whole-cloth from the Phantom’s design. 

Although Phantom of the Paradise was largely a commercial failure upon its initial release, it was wildly successful in certain parts of the world — including in Winnipeg, in Paris, in Tokyo, and in Mexico, where a young Guillermo Del Toro fell in love with the film. 

The screening is being co-presented by the Dallas Film Commission and the Texas Theatre. It will take place at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 26. For more information and tickets, click here.