The Inconceivable Science of “The Princess Bride”

Ellen Dawley, a professor of biology, will participate in the Colonial Theatre’s Science on Screen event in Phoenixville on Saturday, April 21, at 1:30 p.m.

She will talk to moviegoers about the state of being mostly dead, the problem with rodents of unusual size and more about the classic The Princess Bride.

The historic theater’s grant-funded event is part of the national Science on Screen program series, which creatively pairs classic, cult, science fiction, foreign and documentary films with lively presentations by scientists working in related—or seemingly unrelated—fields.

Dawley’s research interests are neural stem cells in the olfactory system and in spinal cord regeneration in amphibians. Amphibians are master regenerators and are a model organism for investigating the extent and limits of neural regeneration in vertebrates.

Science on Screen is an initiative of the Coolidge Corner Theatre with major support from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.  For information and tickets, visit

In 2017, Ursinus physics professor Casey Schwarz participated in the event prior to a screening of Run Lola Run.

The 658-seat Colonial Theatre is located on Bridge Street in the heart of downtown Phoenixville. Opened in 1903, the Colonial is the last surviving of four theaters once existing in the borough and is the only theatre of its kind in Chester County.

It is owned and operated by the nonprofit Association for the Colonial Theatre (ACT), which re-opened the theatre in 1999. Theater programming includes art and independent films seven nights a week, classic films, programs for young audiences, live concerts, and community events.