As Rocky Horror’s 45th Anniv. Halloween Tour Comes to Town, an Interview with ‘Brad’


How’s this for a time warp? The classic cult film The Rocky Horror Picture Show is this year celebrating 45 years delighting audiences with a Halloween night screening in D.C. including a shadow cast performing alongside the film.  

“The Rocky Horror Picture Show 45th Anniversary Spectacular Tour” is stopping by the Entertainment and Sports Arena on October 31 at 8 p.m. The screening of the original, unedited movie will include a live shadow cast and traditional raucous audience participation.  

Barry Bostwick, who played Brad in the movie, will be at the event for photos and to autograph items. “I’m happy to do this short little tour this Halloween,” Bostwick said. He’s particularly excited for the shadow casts to get back on stage to do what they do so enthusiastically. Each cast has a unique personality, not only as to who plays what parts but specific props and costumes. 

“The interaction with the audience is unique to each particular place too,” Bostwick added. “I just think it’s all so fun.” 

Most of the shadow casts participating in the tour have been unfortunately sitting at home the last year and a half due to the ongoing pandemic. Many of their theaters are what Bostwick called “antique-y and retro,” and are still shut down. 

“Rocky Horror was never a moneymaker for anyone but the producers of the movie,” he said. “The shadow casts sell merchandise and that’s what keeps them alive.” 

Rocky Horror is also not a cheap movie to screen, as Disney now owns the rights. The movie is distributed through one of their companies and is a complicated, costly endeavor according to Bostwick. 

“Not a lot of people right now are willing to take the step of solving the problem as to how to screen the movie and do all the stuff we do around it and still come out not in the hole,” Bostwick said. “I think they’re figuring it out but my job is to keep the enthusiasm going while trying to figure it out.” 

As many know, when Rocky Horror was released in 1975, the movie was filled with many actors on the cusp of stardom. Tim Curry, Susan Sarandon, Meatloaf and Barry Bostwick himself are now household names who were all in the original film. 

“Did we ever think it would go as far as it did? God no,” Bostwick said. “We had fun for five weeks dressing up and trying not to slip on the wet floor in our high heels.” 

When the movie first came out, Bostwick didn’t even see it in theaters. He didn’t become aware of its popularity until two years after its release when it became an underground sensation.  

The cast then started doing reunions every year, then every five to 10 years at various ComicCons or HorrorCons around the world.  

“We all love each other dearly and are huge fans of not only the party that goes on around the movie but how the movie has affected some social, emotional and psychological change in people,” Bostwick said.  

The screening at the Entertainment and Sports Arena will still have all the props and costumes (guests are encouraged to dress up!) Rocky Horror fans have grown to love. Audience members will need to show proof of vaccination and wear a mask. Fishnets are not required.

“I’m hoping this is the beginning of a rebirth and people getting out of their homes and reconnecting with humanity,” Bostwick said. “It’s not only healthy for us as humans, but also somatically about accepting differences and if we can’t be around people who are different, it is hard to accept them.” 

Bostwick is eager to get back to the D.C. area, as he previously served as emcee for the Capitol Fourth celebration on PBS for five years in a row. He didn’t have a lot of time to explore at that point, so he’s excited to get some sightseeing in while he’s in town. In addition to A Capitol Fourth, Bostwick did a 1980s miniseries on George Washington (where he played the title character). The series was nominated for six primetime Emmy Awards. 

Barry Bostwick (far right) as Brad in the movie The Rocky Horror Picture Show (1975). Photo from Bostwick’s IMDb.

Barry Bostwick today, at 75. Photo from Barry Bostwick’s IMDb.

More information on the Rocky Horror Picture Show anniversary screening in D.C. can be found at: https://eventsdc.com/events/rocky-horror-picture-show/. Let’s do the time warp again! 

 

 

 

 

 

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