Michael was born and raised in Los Angeles (although his preschool years were spent in San Francisco) and largely grew up at the New Beverly Cinema, as his dad Sherman cofounded the theater when Michael was in the second grade. Besides cinema, Michael enjoys listening to music, riding his bike, eating out, and walking around city neighborhoods.
Three movies that changed your life?
No film has changed my life per se, but three decades-long favorites that immediately come to mind are HAROLD AND MAUDE, SUNSET BOULEVARD, and WALKABOUT, among hundreds of films I of course love and admire. So many films could be put in these top three spots.
Your two favorite movie star crushes are?
I’ll stick with the two earliest screen crushes I can remember having: Sophie Marceau in LA BOUM, viewed in 10th grade French class (many thanks to my teacher at Marshall High for showing us films like this and DIVA), and Diane Lane in A LITTLE ROMANCE, viewed repeatedly on Z Channel growing up.
Best New Bev memory?
Above everything else: my dad. Other fond memories that come to mind include: The Count Dracula Society’s renting the theater in the late 70s and screening DRACULA’S DOG, with the film’s canine star watching from the theater’s front row. Sitting in the theater’s office as a boy and hearing the hysterical laughter of a packed theater as a 1930s screwball comedy played on-screen and realizing the theater’s part in helping to provide such a wonderful, joyful group experience. Working the box office in the late 1990s when we were screening a double bill of VINCENT AND THEO and 3 WOMEN and having a town car pull up to the front of the theater with Robert Altman stepping out of it. He was on his way to the premiere of either COOKIE’S FORTUNE or DR. T & THE WOMEN around the corner at the Showcase Theater and was amazed to see two of his earlier films on the marquee, so he had to stop to say hi. It was one of many brushes with greatness I’ve been fortunate to experience solely because of the theater. All of the lasting friendships made over the years.