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Garry Marshall Theatre to celebrate late actress Penny Marshall with series marathon

Penny Marshall poses on arrival for the film premiere of “New Year’s Eve” at Grauman’s Chinese Theater in Hollywood in December 2011
(Getty Photos)

Those looking to get their fill of the late Penny Marshall’s talents will have a chance to do so during an upcoming marathon of the TV series “Laverne & Shirley” in Burbank later this month.

From 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Jan. 27 , the Garry Marshall Theatre will host a free 12-hour marathon of the late-1970s sitcom to honor the life of Marshall, who died on Dec. 17 from heart failure and was sister of the theater’s namesake, who died in 2016 due to complications from pnuemonia.

The day of the screening also signifies the 43rd anniversary of the debut “Laverne & Shirley.”

Marshall’s co-star, Cindy Williams, who played Shirley Feeney on the show, as well as Marshall’s sister, Ronny Hallin, are slated to stop by throughout the day to meet with fans and talk about their favorite episodes and moments with her.


Joseph Bwarie, a co-artistic director at the theater, said he wants people to know the event is not a memorial to the actress and director but a celebration of her life.

“[It’s a] salute to the woman and the show that made her a household name,” he said.

Since the announcement of the marathon last week, Bwarie said he has received emails from people outside the state who say they’re planning to fly into Los Angeles to attend the event.

Aside from her eight seasons on “Laverne & Shirley,” Penny Marshall was also known for her time behind the camera.


Some notable movies she directed were “Jumpin’ Jack Flash,” “Big,” “Awakenings” and “A League of Their Own.”

Bwarie said “Laverne & Shirley” taught aspiring actors they didn’t need to look like the models on television at the time.

He added that Penny Marshall and Williams were the “Lucy and Ethel” of their generation.

“It was that idea of fun, carefree, slapstick, situational comedy that made you laugh,” Bwarie said. “They say that music is the universal language, but I say comedy is also a universal language.”

The Garry Marshall Theatre is located at 4252 W. Riverside Drive, Burbank.

Twitter: @acocarpio