Glowing in the Dark


Harry Killas


Blue Plate Productions Alan Goldman
  • Release Date 1997
  • Running Time 48 minutes
  • Closed Captions Yes
  • Availability Canada

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Glowing in the Dark Glowing in the DarkGlowing in the Dark

Glowing in the Dark captures the energy and vitality of neon--one of the oldest and most effective forms of advertising. Neon was first patented in 1923 by George Claude, a Parisian who sold over 9 million dollars in territorial licenses in the following six years. The glow of neon lights had swept across North America by the 1950's, enticing passersby into a new urban culture. The catch phrase for this exciting industry was bigger and brighter. Set against a backdrop of spectacular footage of Vancouver, Los Angeles, and Las Vegas, Glowing in the Dark is an illuminating exploration into the vibrant history and contemporary use of neon. The movement, power, and raw exuberance of neon is revealed through a fascinating demonstration of how neon is made, a montage of notable neon installations, and commentary from a colourful array of enthusiasts including:

  • John Atkin, a heritage advocate, graphic designer, and leading expert on the history of neon in Vancouver. In 1986, Atkin's enthusiasm for neon led him to graph the entire city of Vancouver, pinpointing the location of each neon sign
  • Alan Hess, an architect, critic, and author of Viva Las Vegas, who leads viewers on a tour of a graveyard for neon signs
  • Lili Lakich, a neon sculptor, instructor, and founder of the Neon Museum of Art in Los Angeles. She has created some stunning neon pieces and restored some of the great signs of L.A.'s yesteryear
  • Willem Volkersz, an artist who has brought neon indoors through his quirky exhibit, Domestic Neon
  • Bill Warren, an entrepreneur who was responsible for erecting some of Vancouver's biggest, brightest and most controversial signs. His most contentious neon creation was a 40-foot-high woman clothed in a bikini
  • Members of the band 54-40 talk about how they saved and restored Vancouver's Smiling Buddha Cabaret sign

Director: Harry Killas
Producers: Alan Goldman, Blue Plate Productions

This 1997 film has been restored to HD quality in 2023.

Home use and one-time screening for educational use available at

Digital Site License (DSL) - Terms of Use

If your institution does not have a server or you are looking into a license for curated one-time events or fixed term exhibitions, please contact us.

Digital Site License (DSL) to Use Copyrighted Material - Terms of Use

The following terms are understood, accepted and effective upon payment of License Fee to Moving Images Distribution, the Licensor, and the buyer, the Licensee, named on the invoice.  Copyrighted material, as identified on the invoice, hereinafter referred to as the Program.

  • License: The Licensor hereby grants to the Licensee, for the DSL term listed on the invoice, the educational rights for digital streaming of the Program for use within the Licensee’s private, closed system, password-protected platform. Licensee acknowledges it shall not sublicense, sublease, rent, resell, duplicate, digitize or transfer to any other medium or format.  Licensee shall not edit, cut or alter the Program nor post it on publicly-accessible websites or networks.  This license (i) will not be included in any courses that could be sold to other institutions for future distance-education use; (ii) is non-transferable; and (iii) is not assignable by the Licensee.

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  • Expiration of Term: Upon expiration of the license term, the Licensee shall cease streaming of the Program and the Program must be inaccessible to Users after license term expiry or deleted from the Licensee’s digital servers upon expiry.

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DVD with PPR - Terms of Use

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