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Howard Rust, UK Cinerama Fan #1
Passed Away, age 83, 1927 - 17.02.2011

The 70mm Newsletter
Written by: Bill LawrenceDate: 22.02.2011
A happy Howard in his second home: Pictureville Cinema, Bradford. Images by Thomas Hauerslev

Howard Rust was the little guy who strode like a giant in people’s hearts. When he heard about the National Museum of Photography Film & Television re-awakening the movie magnificence of Cinerama, it was a dream come true and the word started to spread. In June 1993, he attended the first public screening at Pictureville Cinema at the Museum in Bradford and never stopped coming. He talked about it, he brought friends to see it, he bribed friends to come see it, for it was "This is Cinerama", a movie that had fascinated him since he was a young man in the 1950s.

Born in the UK, he emigrated with his parents to the States and set up a new life. He loved it. Especially the movies. And when Cinerama came along, he fell head over heels. When his mother died, he came back to England with his father and left some of his dreams behind. But the 1990s became a high point and the excitement of seeing 3-strip again was falling in love once more.

Howard was a beautiful guy, he talked with amazing passion and sincerity about the movies and put his money where his mouth was. He put his heart and soul into promoting the Museum and especially Cinerama. After six years, watching "This is Cinerama" on the first Saturday of every month, it seemed only right that this passion and dedication should be honoured. Howard was awarded the Grand Order of the Bradford Film Festival and became the first member of the
Widescreen Academy. From that point on the Academy grew. At the Weekend, he was a great attraction for many visitors, from the UK and overseas and he did great work in promoting the Weekend and Cinerama.

When he met Dave Strohmaier, he was an obvious choice to provide the voice of the fan on the documentary
"Cinerama Adventure", and became a natural in front of the camera, his fame spreading more widely.

In later years Howard was bedevilled by increasing frailty and started missing shows to his great regret and the regret of those attending. He was much loved by those who knew him and the world is a heavier place for his passing.
More in 70mm reading:

Howard appeared in "Cinerama Adventure"

Howard as speech writer:
Willem Bouwmeester 2002
Keith Swadkins 2003
Tony Sloman 2004
Paul Rayton 2005
Academy of the Wide Screen Weekend

Internet link:


An Utterly Deserved Award

Howard was the first member of the Academy of the Wide Screen Weekend. Seen here is the Academy in March 2009. Image by Thomas Hauerslev

A new award was presented to Mr. Howard Rust during Widescreen Weekend, in March 1999 for his support of Cinerama. Howard paid for the Cinerama logo on Pictureville's entrance door!

Nothing less than the Grand Order of Bradford Film Festival. A very surprised and happy Howard accepted the prize in the form of a certificate from Bill Lawrence, Head of Film. Later Howard became instrumental as a speech writer for awards given to: Willem Bouwmeester, Keith Swadkins, Tony Sloman and Paul Rayton.

From Dave Strohmaier, US

I had a pleasant dream the night I heard Howard had passed away. I dreamed that somehow he stopped by my house to say good by to me but said he couldn't stay and talk as he had to hurry off because the show was about to start soon. What show I asked? Turns out he had been invited that very night by Lowell Thomas and Fred Waller to sit in the sweet spot right next to them for a special showing of "Seven Wonders of the World". As he turned around to leave I said "but Howard where did they get the print, will it have any color left"?

He said with a gigantic smile on his face and a twinkle in his eye, "David the theater where I am going does not have such problems, oh yes and this weekend they are showing "Cinerama Holiday!""

Have fun Howard my friend and give my best to Fred, Lowell and the rest of the crew.

From Mark Lyndon, UK

Howard Rust was celebrated as a Cinerama fan.

Ah but, to borrow a phrase from Lowell Thomas, he was much more than that. He was the best of us and an inspiration to us all. A welcoming presence who was always very welcome. His absence was and will be keenly felt.

A gifted communicator who brilliantly communicated his love and enthusiasm for something very special, something that was to draw increasing numbers of people from around the world. Howard was instrumental in reviving world interest in Cinerama as Bradford became the centre of the Cinerama world. We owe him much.

And so, if you seek his monument, just look around you, as the giant Cinerama curtains part…
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Updated 07-01-23