Rob Reiner’s 1989 romantic comedy When Harry Met Sally… is being honored at the annual TCM Classic Film Festival. To celebrate, Reiner will reunite with stars Billy Crystal and Meg Ryan for a one-off event after a screening on April 11th, 2019. The romantic comedy will be celebrating its 30th anniversary as Turner Classic Movies celebrates its 25th anniversary on the air and its 10th anniversary for the festival itself. The 2019 theme is Follow Your Heart: Love At The Movies.
When Harry Met Sally was met with critical acclaim upon its release in the summer of 1989. The movie was released with a small promotional campaign, and was hoping for word-of-mouth success, which is what happened. Ben Mankiewicz, TCM primetime anchor and official host of the TCM Classic Film Festival had this to say about the special reunion.
“There are romantic comedies – and then there’s When Harry Met Sally. The chemistry between Billy Crystal and Meg Ryan makes them part of a legacy that includes the greats of classic movies: Spencer Tracy and Katherine Hepburn; Cary Grant and Rosalind Russell; and Jack Lemmon and Shirley MacLaine. And Rob Reiner – utilizing Nora Ephron’s word-perfect screenplay – follows in the rarefied air of the filmmaking giants who made those earlier pictures.”
Billy Crystal was initially skeptical of When Harry Met Sally‘s box office potential since it was going up against Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade and Tim Burton’s Batman. However, thanks to critical praise of Nora Ephron’s screenplay as well as Crystal and Meg Ryan’s performances, the romantic comedy was able to earn over $92 million at the box office. Since the movie only cost $16 million, it was a hit, and has gone on to become one of the most beloved romantic comedies of all time.
When Harry Met Sally asks, “Can men and women ever just be friends?” and brought up many contemporary aspects about relationships for the time. The terms “high maintenance” and “transitional person” became household names after the release of the movie. Nora Ephron states that she still gets asked about the story all of the time, and has people tell her that their own personal relationships are similar to the story, or elements of the story, from When Harry Met Sally.
Rob Reiner is taking part in another reunion set for 2019 as well. The director is set to appear with Christopher Guest, Michael McKean, and Harry Shearer for the 35th anniversary of legendary mockumentary This is Spinal Tap at the 2019 Tribeca Film Festival. Reiner will be going back to look at his past during the months of April and May next year, and fans are excited to see these special one-off reunions. The TCM Classic Film festival celebrates the romantic comedy on opening night, and then finishes on April 14th with its 25th anniversary for the final night. The Hollywood Reporter was the first to announce the When Harry Met Sally reunion.