The Little Rock Film Festival and Movies in the Park are proud to present the classic 1977 film Smokey and the Bandit, outdoors at the Riverfest Amphitheater, as the closing night film of the 2011 Little Rock Film Festival. Legendary Hollywood stuntman and director Hal Needham will be on hand to introduce the film, and take photos in front of a film perfect replica of the Smokey Pontiac Firebird Trans-Am.
“Smokey,” aka Sheriff Buford T. Justice (Jackie Gleason), is the prospective father-in-law of unwilling bride Carrie (Sally Field). The Bandit (Burt Reynolds), a maverick race car driver, makes an $80,000 bet that he can transport a shipment of Coors beer from Texarkana, Texas, to Atlanta within 28 hours.
It’s important to note that in 1977, it was illegal to sell the Coors brand east of the Mississippi River without a permit. Already in danger of arrest from redneck lawmen like Buford T. Justice, Bandit furthers his chances at a stiff jail term when he offers a ride to Carrie, who hopes to escape her unwanted wedding to Justice’s boy. Debuting the same year as Star Wars, Smokey and the Bandit became an instant Southern classic and reaped close to $50 million at the box office and led to two sequels.