Posted on Thursday, May 20th, 2010 by Peter Sciretta
Believe it or not, A Christmas Story was the first film I ever saw in a movie theater. Which is probably one of the reasons I feel more of an attachment to the film than most. I would be afraid to add all the hours of passive viewings over the years. When I was younger, 24 Hours of A Christmas Story would remain on my television set, from the first airing, to it’s last – playing in the background for the entire Christmas holiday.
But as much as I love the film, I’ve yet to feel the need to travel to Cleveland to visit the original home which was used in the film’s production. Which is kind of strange because I love visiting real life movie locations. It might be because the house is in Ohio, and I don’t ever expect to set foot in the state (no offense to Ohio, its just… out of the way). A few years ago, a fan of the film bought the original house from the movie and restored it to it’s original screen-used conditions. The house has been turned into a tourist attraction and museum that is open all year long. A couple years ago they even held a massive Christmas Story fan convention in the city.
This year they have hired 35-year-old actor Ian Petrella, who played Ralphie’s little brother Randy in the film, to “come home” and live in the house during the months of July and August, where he will serve as a special tour guide. I guess they couldn’t get Peter Billingsley, who played Ralphie in the original film but is too busy as a Hollywood producer (Iron Man) turned director (Couples Retreat). Read the full press release, after the jump.