Cardinal Stage is showing a screening of “The Room” at 9 p.m. Feb. 12 at the Buskirk-Chumley Theater.
First released in 2003, “The Room” is written, produced and directed by Tommy Wiseau, who also stars in the film alongside actress Juliette Danielle and actor Greg Sestero.
Set in San Francisco, the plot centers around a love triangle involving a banker, played by Wiseau, his fiancee Lisa, played by Danielle, and his friend Mark, played by Sestero.
With a number of subplots and an unconventional filmmaking style, Tommy Wiseau’s screenplay quickly became a cult classic. It is often referred to as the “Citizen Kane” of bad movies, according to Entertainment Weekly. Other known cult films include “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” and “The Big Lebowski.”
Cardinal Stage Managing Director Gabe Gloden is a big fan of “The Room” and said it is a true cult experience. He said “The Room” is a movie so bad that it’s good, but that it’s bad in the most interesting ways possible.
“The film is truly a failure on every level, but in a really beautiful way that makes it endlessly entertaining,” Gloden said.
Cardinal Stage Marketing Manager Cassie Hakken had not experienced “The Room'' until Gloden introduced her to it. She has since become a huge fan, introducing the film to many of her friends in the Bloomington community.
“I never thought of myself as the type to enjoy a bad movie, but “The Room” transcends terribleness and reaches a whole new, indescribable level,” Hakken said.
The film even inspired a Hollywood hit, “The Disaster Artist,” starring James Franco. Gloden said “The Disaster Artist,” which focuses on the making of Wiseau's film, has ushered in a new generation of moviegoers to this story.
Gloden also said seeing “The Room” in the theater is an incredible social experience, as students often look to arts and culture to help them identify people they have something in common with.
“It’s a secret handshake movie,” Gloden said. “These types of movies — and arts and culture in general — are sometimes best experienced together.”
In an effort to provide the Bloomington community with arts and entertainment in the safest way possible, the Buskirk-Chumley Theater requires proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test result within 48 hours for all events open to the public.
Pre-sale tickets are currently available for $12. Tickets can also be purchased at the door for $15.
All proceeds from the ticket sales directly support Cardinal Stage and the Buskirk-Chumley Theater, two Bloomington arts institutions.