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Virtual Education Seminar Hosted Through State Theatre
The movie ‘The Natural’ will be the subject of a virtual education seminar, offered through the State Theatre in Modesto on Aug. 20.

Guest author Dennis Snelling will be the featured speaker at a special virtual education seminar being offered through the State Theatre in Modesto. Topic of the discussion will be the film ‘The Natural’ which starred Robert Redford.

Snelling will be talking about the similarities and differences between the book and the film, some of the themes of the story, and also about some of the real-life inspirations for the story, Joe Jackson and the Black Sox scandal, and shootings of two ballplayers, Billy Jurges and Eddie Waitkus, that serve as the basis for the shooting of Roy Hobbs in the film.

The event is scheduled for Thursday, Aug. 20 at 7 p.m.

Nothing was going to stop Roy Hobbs from fulfilling his boyhood dream of baseball superstardom. A 14-year-old Hobbs fashions a powerful bat from a fallen oak tree. He soon impresses major league scouts with his ability, fixing his extraordinary talent in the mind of sportswriter Max Mercy, who eventually becomes instrumental in Hobb’s career. But a meeting with a mysterious woman shatters his dream. Years pass and an older Hobbs reappears as a rookie from The New York Knights. Overcoming physical pain and defying those who have a stake in seeing the Knights lose, Hobbs, with his boyhood bat, has his chance to lead the Knights to the pennant and to finally fulfill his dream.

When you register for this virtual education seminar, the program will be presented in three parts.

On Monday, Aug. 17, you’ll receive an email to download and watch a pre-taped lecture, to view before the film at your convenience.

Then, you can go off and watch the film on your own. Please note, The State is not able to provide the film, but it is available to stream.

Make sure you watch the film before the discussion, which will take place on Thursday, Aug. 20 at 7 p.m. over Zoom. Before the discussion, you can submit questions for the instructor at: You’ll also have the opportunity to submit questions during the discussion.