John Schneider

John Schneider

Fans of the popular television show “The Dukes of Hazzard” will be excited to see a familiar face on the Winchester Square Thursday.

John Schneider is hosting a movie screening of his latest film, “Christmas Cars,” Thursday at 7 p.m. at the Oldham Theatre.

“The Dukes of Hazzard,” which ran from Jan. 1979 to Feb. 1985, featured Schneider as Bo Duke.

In the “Christmas Cars” movie, Schneider will be stepping back behind the wheel of the iconic Dodge Charger, the General Lee. The movie will reveal a semi-true story based on Schneider’s life.

In the film, an independent studio owner is forced to rebuild after a storm rips through and tears apart his property. Schneider Studios faced a similar issue in 2016. To watch a trailer for the movie, go to www.youtube.com/watch?v=HoH5Mk1wMzw.

For fans of “The Dukes of Hazzard,” the movie may make you feel like you’re back on the couch with your loved ones watching the show when the movie is over.

Red-carpet arrivals with Schneider along with other cast members and guests will begin at 5 p.m. at the Oldham Theatre.

A meet-and-greet reception will be held beginning at 5:30 p.m. for VIP ticket holders prior to the movie screening.

It will include a picture with Schneider, an autographed copy of “Christmas Cars” and an opportunity to mingle with him (this will be the only time for autographs.)

There will be an additional charge for autographs of personal items such as Dukes of Hazzard lunch boxes, old photos, car parts, etc. Schneider will also perform a few songs at the VIP meet and greet.

Doors open for general-admission ticket holders at 6 p.m. for the movie screening.

A one-hour question-and-answer session will follow the screening with Schneider answering questions about the movie from attendees.

In an interview with Schneider last week, the Herald Chronicle asked about his favorite Christmas memory as a boy.

“My favorite Christmas memory actually is in 1969, when we had a huge snowstorm in New York,” Schneider said. “I got to dig a tunnel in the driveway with my brothers and we lived in it for several days. Of course we slept in the house, but we lived in it like kids live in a fort for several days and it was great.”

Asked if he has connections to this area, Schneider said his good friend, Betsy Mazzuola, lives in Franklin County.

“I met Betsy when we did her car show several years ago there and I have remained friends with her ever since. She’s a great asset to everything we do at John Schneider studios.”

“The Dukes of Hazzard” television show produced 147 episodes. The Herald Chronicle asked Schneider about his favorite memories from working on the show.

“There’s seven years of great memories of working on ‘The Dukes of Hazzard,’ but by far the best memories I have are hanging out and talking with Denver Pile who was truly my Uncle Jesse. So much so that I pay honor to him — at least I hope I do — in the ‘Christmas Cars’ movie by naming the main character, played by me, ‘Uncle Denver.’”

Schneider is looking forward to another big development next year.

“The project we’re looking forward immensely in the future is the movie, ‘Stand on It,’ which we will be filming the end of February, beginning of March. This movie will be a tribute to ‘Smoky and the Bandit’ much like ‘Christmas Cars’ is a tribute to ‘The Dukes of Hazzard.’”

Organizers of the event tonight invite everyone to gather on the Winchester Square and welcome Schneider, guests and attendees to town.

A limited number of tickets are available. Tickets will not be available at the box office tonight and must be purchased at www.etix.com/ticket/p/2950818/john-schneiders-christmas-cars-screening-winchester-the-oldham-theatre.

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