It's a Wonderful Life poster

The Classic Movies in Johnstown series will once again cater to the holidays with the screening of the Christmas classic “It’s a Wonderful Life.”

Based on the short story “The Greatest Gift,” the film is considered to be one of the most loved films in American cinema and has become traditional viewing during the Christmas season.

“It’s a Wonderful Life,” which stars Indiana native James “Jimmy” Stewart as George Bailey, is about a man who has given up his dreams in order to help others. His imminent suicide on Christmas Eve brings about the intervention of his guardian angel, Clarence Odbody (Henry Travers). Clarence shows George all the lives he has touched and how different life in his community of Bedford Falls would have been had he never been born.

“It’s a great expression movie,” said Kamal Gella, the event’s organizer.

“It is one of the most inspirational movies for people to see,” he said. “It shows how Jimmy Stewart has given up his hopes, he relives all the good things he has done, and he then takes a step back from committing suicide.”

Gella, who truly enjoys the inspiration behind the movie, said the film offers hope to those currently experiencing tough times.

“That is why we selected this movie to screen,” Gella said. “It’s a wonderful movie that gives inspiration and it also offers to people how they can be the guardian angel for people going through a difficult time. So you can see both sides of this movie.”

The Christmas drama will be shown at noon and 6 p.m. Dec. 13 at Westwood Plaza Theatre and Cafe.

The film series, which is sponsored by the Gella Family Foundation and Community Foundation for the Alleghenies, has received a tremendous response from the community, Gella said.

Gella said the 6 p.m. screening has already sold out and that he anticipates the same for the noon show.

Tickets can be purchased at or at the theater.

Ronald Fisher is a reporter for The Tribune-Democrat. Follow him on Twitter @FisherSince_82.

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