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South Butler Library to show encore presentation of Brooklyn Bridge documentary

Saxonburg Museum curator Fred Ceasar appears in the Brooklyn Bridge documentary, screened at the South Butler Community Library in May 2023. The documentary is being screened there again next week. Butler Eagle File Photo

The documentary “Brooklyn Bridge: An Engineering Masterpiece” has yet to receive an official release of any kind in the United States. The only chance Americans have had to watch the German-produced documentary was in May 2023, at a one-time-only showing at South Butler Community Library in Saxonburg — the borough founded by the bridge’s architect, John Roebling.

Those who missed the first showing will get a second chance to see the documentary, as the library has been granted permission to screen it again: 6:30 p.m. May 22 and 1 p.m. May 23.

Admission to each showing is free, but reservations are required to enter. Donations will be collected to support the Saxonburg Museum and its continuing effort to preserve Roebling’s original wire rope workshop, which is in dire need of rescue as it slowly sinks into the ground.

South Butler library director Michelle Lesniak said producers of the documentary have been unable to secure a deal to put the film on an American TV network or streaming service.

“A streaming service has to buy that right, and they haven’t done that yet,” Lesniak said. “That’s how it works.”

Saxonburg was chosen as the location for the first American screening last year, as several scenes from the documentary were filmed there in 2021.

“Fred Caesar at the Saxonburg Museum has a direct connection with the producers of the film, because they did film here,” Lesniak said. “That’s why we got the exclusive initial showing last year.”

Lesniak said mid-May was chosen as the date for both last year’s and this year’s screenings because it coincides with the anniversary of the Brooklyn Bridge’s opening on May 24, 1883.

Those interested in reserving a spot at either of the two screenings this year can call the library at 724-352-4810.

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