Silver Scream Spookshow celebrates groundbreaking achievement of 'King Kong' on its 90th anniversary

The Silver Scream Spookshow presents the 90-year-old groundbreaking film "King Kong" at the Plaza Theater originally released in 1933. (Courtesy of Shane Morton)

The Silver Scream Spookshow presents the 90-year-old film “King Kong” at the Plaza Theater this Saturday. In 1933, the movie secured its place in history as the first significant feature film to star an animated character. The film’s use of stop motion is regarded by many as a pioneering achievement in the art. 

Additionally, Max Steiner’s 1933 score forever changed film music with the help of a 46-piece orchestra, and “King Kong” was the first film to have a thematic score rather than background music. This weekend, film buffs can see this classic on the Plaza’s big screen thanks to the creatives behind the Silver Scream Spookshow, Shane Morton (a.k.a. Professor Morté) and Madeline Brumby (a.k.a. Guna).

The two co-producers joined “City Lights” senior producer Kim Drobes to talk about “King Kong” and other thrills served up at their live performance and film screening events.

Professor Morté, also known as Shane Morton, is an Atlanta-based FX artist and he first created the Silver Scream Spookshow 16 years ago. Typically, Professor Morté performs before film screenings along with a cast of characters including magicians, dancers, comedians, and his co-producer Madeline Brumby.

Brumby said, “I play the character Guna, who is a cousin of the Creature from the Black Lagoon, and one of the ‘Go-Go ghouls.’ And before we project the movie we’ve selected on the big screen at the Plaza Theater, we have a pre-movie performance,” Brumby explained. “It has the visuals, and the energy of something like PeeWee’s Playhouse meets ‘The Munsters,’ but where we differ is not only in our budget, but also that we do not rehearse our show. It is completely improvised, except for perhaps a little bit of light rehearsal on magic tricks or some of the light cues, but we can promise, what you see has never been seen before and probably will never be seen again.”

For Morton, screening “King Kong” for its 90th birthday is a long-anticipated no-brainer. “It’s frankly my favorite movie,” he said. “When I was just a little Morte, it was the first movie I ever saw in a theater, and it put me on the course of my path to being a ‘Ghost Host with the Most.'” As a special effects engineer, Morton’s well-qualified to appraise the movie’s groundbreaking technical achievements. “We live in an age where there are big budget, special effects-driven movies, but there would be none without the influence of the great ‘King Kong,’ the eighth wonder of the world,” said Morton.

The Silver Scream Spookshow will host two screenings of “King Kong” on Saturday, Feb. 4. A kid’s matinee screens at 1:30 PM, and the late show begins at 10:00 PM. More information about the Silver Scream Spookshow is available at