'The Event' premiere screening party in Petersburg

Posted by Shawn Maclauchlan

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - NBC has picked the location for the local pre-screening of the new TV drama "The Event." The public screening will be at Virginia State University's Anderson-Turner Auditorium on Saturday at 7 p.m.

Petersburg was voted to the top stop in an online contest for a premiere of the new NBC series staring former Petersburg resident Blair Underwood. Last month, Underwood had begun pushing for the city as a possible location to screen "The Event," a political thriller in which he plays the president of the United States.

When the contest ended last week, Petersburg had attained the most votes -- more than 3,500, a total unmatched by any other city in the country including major metro areas of New York, Los Angeles, Washington D.C. and the number two spot, Oklahoma City.

"I'm very excited to witness my hometown rally together for a common cause such as this," Underwood told The Petersburg Progress-Index. "Henry Ford once said, 'Coming together is a beginning. Keeping together is progress. Working together is success.' In the eyes of some, this simply represents a celebratory, movie-going experience. But to me and others, it represents success. Success within a community, our community."

Because Petersburg does not have a movie theater, NBC had initially considered to host the screening at Southpark Mall but then decided against it because it does not have a Petersburg address. Although VSU is not in Petersburg, it does have a Petersburg ZIP code. NBC has not yet announced more details about the premiere or if Underwood will attend.

"I can't make any promises, but I will try to be there," Underwood said last month.

To get a ticket for the premiere, visit http://eventful.com/campaigns/theevent2010 and follow the instructions to have a ticket e-mailed to you. The premiere is overbooked to ensure a full house and seating is first come, first served. The ticket does not guarantee admission. The premiere will be at 7 p.m. Saturday in Virginia State University's Anderson-Turner Auditorium in Virginia Hall.

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