Fathom Events remembers the late Betty White with nationwide tribute in theaters

WTOP's Jason Fraley previews a Betty White tribute (Part 1)

Comedy legend Betty White died on New Year’s Eve two weeks before her 100th birthday.

This month, Fathom Events will pay tribute with the special event “Betty White: A Celebration,” featuring a screening of the documentary “Betty White: 100 Years Young.”

The film will screen in nearly 700 movie theaters nationwide on her birthday, Jan. 17, with a trio of screenings at 1 p.m., 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. at participating movie theaters.

“We didn’t want her birthday to pass without bringing together all the people that love her, from her co-stars and friends to her many millions of fans of all ages, to celebrate what made Betty a national treasure,” filmmaker Steve Boettcher said in a statement.

White granted exclusive access to Boettcher and co-producer Mike Trinklein, whose previous projects include the four-season PBS series “Pioneers of Television” with biographies of Robin Williams, Mary Tyler Moore, Dick Van Dyke and Carol Burnett.

The documentary provides a glimpse into her life with behind-the-scenes footage of White on set, working with office staff, entertaining at home and advocating for animal rights.

Special guests include Ryan Reynolds, Carol Burnett, Valerie Bertinelli, Jennifer Love Hewitt and dozens of other celebrity friends who offer their tributes to the beloved icon.

The film is packed with clips from some of White’s most famous roles, including the innocent Rose on “Golden Girls,” the bawdy Sue Ann on “The Mary Tyler Moore Show,” the worldly Elka on “Hot in Cleveland,” her celebrated hosting gig on “Saturday Night Live” and her award-winning Super Bowl commercial for Snickers, among other career highlights.

You’ll also see a lost TV episode from White’s early sitcom days in the 1950s.

White’s legacy includes many firsts. She was the first woman to produce a national TV show; the first woman to star in a sitcom; the first producer to hire a female director; and the first woman to receive an Emmy nomination. In fact, she is the first woman to ever appear on television, thanks to her role in an experimental broadcast in the late 1930s.

“Betty White was a beloved cultural icon,” Fathom Events Vice President of Programming, Strategy and Business Affairs Daren Miller said. “We couldn’t be more excited to be a part of this coming together of her many fans.”

WTOP's Jason Fraley previews a Betty White tribute (Part 2)

Jason Fraley

Hailed by The Washington Post for “his savantlike ability to name every Best Picture winner in history," Jason Fraley began at WTOP as Morning Drive Writer in 2008, film critic in 2011 and Entertainment Editor in 2014, providing daily arts coverage on-air and online.

Like WTOP on Facebook and follow WTOP on Twitter and Instagram to engage in conversation about this article and others.

Get breaking news and daily headlines delivered to your email inbox by signing up here.

© 2022 WTOP. All Rights Reserved. This website is not intended for users located within the European Economic Area.

More from WTOP

Log in to your WTOP account for notifications and alerts customized for you.

Sign up