Four decades ago this June, Captain Brody set out with Hooper and Quint to hunt down the infamous great white, and we’re celebrating here on Amity—er—Martha’s Vineyard. The countdown to June 20, when the island classic returns to big screens across the US, has begun. We’re thrilled to see our favorite movie still gaining new fans while we relive memories of its creation here on the Island. Check out these five ways we’re celebrating Jaws’ 40th Anniversary, and if you’re in the same boat, come join the fun!
1. Jaws Screenings at Island Theaters
Jaws is still a visually stunning film in 2015 — we get an extra chill from its gorgeous wide shots of island attractions like South Beach knowing the shark is lurking in nearby waters. Sure, you can watch those scenes on your smartphone, but nothing matches the collective gasp of a group seeing the shark’s first set of leftovers on the big screen.
Martha’s Vineyard movie theaters are helping with the hunt. Entertainment Cinemas here in Edgartown is screening the film every Sunday evening at 6:30 for the month of June., and the Martha’s Vineyard Film Society is joining the national celebration with Jaws screenings at the Capawock and Strand theaters on June 20.
2. A Brand-new Jaws Map
If you meet an Islander who was here while Jaws was being filmed, you’re guaranteed a good story. One of our favorites is from a friend who saw a mechanic working on the internal machinery of the model shark on a dock near Oak Bluffs — he’d gone in head first, with just his legs sticking out of the shark’s mouth. Our custom Vineyard Square Jaws Map has all of the original set locations, with many still recognizable today. We’re always happy to help guests plan a tour, too.
3. Local Celebrity Sightings
You never know who might make an appearance here on the Island. We’re keeping our eyes out for Spielberg, Dreyfuss, and company. In the meantime, keep in mind that the crew picked out locals to be extras. Don’t be afraid to strike up a bar conversation with the bearded gentleman at the far end — he just might have been in the movie. Our favorite local celebrity is Lee Fierro, who delivered one of the most memorable slaps in film history as Mrs. Kintner. Lee lives on the Island and has been known to stop in at Vineyard Square and say hi!
4. Shark Fun on Twitter
Shark tracking has come a long way since Quint used used his harpoon gun to tether those yellow barrels. It’s a lot more humane, too — turns out these finned creatures are pretty harmless in real life and they’re an important part of the ocean ecosystem. OCEARCH, a marine research group, has been tagging real live sharks with GPS modules so regular people like us can follow their travels around the Atlantic Ocean and learn about them. Our favorite one? A great white named Mary Lee, who has her own very witty Twitter account.
5. A Custom Jaws 40th Anniversary Package
We decided to make it easier for Vineyard Square guests to get in on the fin frenzy. Visitors who book our Jaws 40th Anniversary Package will get a Jaws poster signed by Lee Fierro, tickets to see the movie at Entertainment Cinemas, and a copy of our Jaws Map. Hope to see you here in Edgarown!