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2 more Treasures from American Film Archives sets coming

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2 more Treasures from American Film Archives sets coming

Old 05-12-06, 01:01 PM
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2 more Treasures from American Film Archives sets coming

These are a long ways off... (Set #3 is scheduled for fall 2007, #4 for fall 2008), but the National Film Preservation Foundation (www.filmpreservation.org) is working on two more sets. Here's an excerpt from their annual report:

"Bringing together the superb preservation work of many institutions, Treasures presents historically important but little known orphan films on DVD, with new musical accompaniments, onscreen program notes, and a printed catalog of essays discussing the films’ significance. The anthologies make rare motion pictures come alive for contemporary viewers and have become basic tools in universities and libraries. Continuing this approach, the NFPF has started production on two more DVD sets.

Treasures from American Film Archives 3 explores the social-issue film of the silent era. Abortion, immigration, child labor, tuberculosis, racial discrimination, juvenile delinquency, capital punishment, unionization—the movies began during a period of social reform and brought an astonishing range of hard-hitting issues to the screen. At first commercial filmmakers crafted stories inspired by newspaper headlines and explored issues that mattered to urban working-class viewers. But as moviegoing grew in popularity, business groups, unions, public health experts, social welfare
advocates, and government agencies also used the medium to advance their agendas. Film connected with a vast audience and transcended barriers of education and language.

It is easy to lose sight of the crucial role of early motion pictures in framing public debate because the films have become so difficult to see. Treasures 3, a three-DVD set with audio commentary and program notes, will reclaim this history by presenting an array of features, documentaries, serials, newsreel
segments, and cartoons addressing social issues from varying ideological perspectives.

The anthology will draw on the preservation work of the nation’s preeminent silent film archives—the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, George Eastman House, the Library of Congress, the Museum of Modern Art, the National Archives and Records Administration, and the UCLA Film and Television Archive—and reunite the curatorial and technical team that created our earlier sets. Thanks to funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities and the National Film Preservation Board of the Library of Congress, we have begun production and expect to release Treasures 3 in fall 2007.

With $100,000 in seed money from the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual
Arts, we also have begun preliminary work on Treasures from American Film Archives 4: The American Avant-Garde, 1945–85. During the four decades following World War II, such varied artists as Kenneth Anger, Maya Deren, Harry Smith, and Marie Menken saw new possibilities in film. These trailblazers found receptive audiences and inspired (and provoked) younger filmmakers such as Bruce Conner, Stan Brakhage, Chick Strand, George and Mike Kuchar, Andy Warhol, and Ernie Gehr. At the time the full spectrum of cinematic innovation seemed to defy generalization. Coining new terms—personal
film, experimental film, underground film, new American cinema—critics strove to illuminate the qualities that made the films so different. What is more apparent now is that these many artists, although poles apart in style, technique, and interests, were united by their passion to redefine the boundaries of cinema.

Treasures 4 will both represent and celebrate the diverse currents of the period. The two-disc set with program notes will present works preserved by five archives specializing in the avant-garde: the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, Anthology Film Archives, the Museum of Modern Art, the
New York Public Library’s Donnell Media Center, and the Pacific Film Archive. The NFPF is now seeking completion funds and plans to release the set in fall 2008.

Because the Treasures DVDs have become such widely used film access tools,
the NFPF has a responsibility to keep them available. When our first set went out of print in 2004, the Cecil B. De Mille Foundation and Sterling Vineyards generously stepped forward with funds to reissue it with updated program notes. The Encore Edition was released in May 2005. The NFPF has already
sold 3,000 more copies and shared the net proceeds with the 18 contributing archives."
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Old 05-14-06, 06:04 PM
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Great news, the first two sets are favorites of mine.
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Old 05-15-06, 09:43 AM
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Thanks for the update Brian; I enjoy these sets too. I hope there won't be too much overlap with similar existing sets though.
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Old 05-15-06, 12:01 PM
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loved the two sets....so I'm in
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Old 05-15-06, 04:03 PM
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These sets are great, but expensive so I don't mind them being spaced out a year apart.
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Old 05-16-06, 12:16 AM
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I have the first two sets and they are fascinating. Unfortunately since they are so expensive, I will only buy them at DDD's 20% off sale.
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