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Peter Monaghan writes about the first documentary from Peter Clifton, best known for his Led Zeppelin concert film “The Song Remains the Same,” on Clifton’s “lost” rock documentary of the Australian band The Easybeats during their London tour, recently rediscovered in a San Francisco archive. There are also stories on Orphan Film Symposium spinoff, the Medical Film Symposium, held in Philadelphia this past winter, and international Home Movie Day. In general we’ll strive to keep you current on “orphans” (film and legislation) and “parental” things like ownership and repatriation. Also, please note our pieces on Cinema Treasures and the American Indian Film Gallery, both of which can happily consume oodles of time when you link over to their sites.
We’re excited about our books section where we bring to your attention new and forthcoming books. Titles described here include: African American Actresses: The Struggle for Visibility: 1900-1963, Hollywood Incoherent: Narration in Seventies Cinema, Beyond Dolby: Cinema and the Digital Sound Age, and Dream Factories of a Former Colony: American Fantasies, Philippine Cinema. Peter Monaghan corresponded with some of the authors about their use of archival sources, and received some illuminating answers.
Note our two guest writers, Matthew Epler and Hannah Palin. Both pieces — one describing thousands of University of Washington sports team films and videos, and the other a collection of Russian films and footage of King Hussein and his late wife now at the Jordanian Royal Film Commission — characterize what many archivists encounter when first faced with a collection. As Epler writes: “Why were Russian films being screened in Jordan? Who was watching them? What kind of presence did the Russians have culturally in Jordan? Who were these local filmmakers? Are any of these films rare? Are they worth saving?” If you and your archive have a story, please consider sharing. Like message boards, and listservs, we too hope to serve the community by putting out calls for assistance for questions posed by a collection. There’s also a lovely piece on the newly rediscovered 1927 Karl Brown film Stark Love, shot on location in the Smoky Mountains, reprinted from Now and Then, the magazine from the Appalachian Studies department at East Tennessee State University. More on that can be found here.
We welcome and encourage your feedback, advice, and suggestions. Please fill out our survey. You can go freestyle by sending us an email, or using the comment forms connected to the stories on our site. If you are not familiar with the Association of Moving Image Archivists, they are the organization of record for the community. There are many other groups, blogs, societies that center around this basic theme and are happy to have you. We have a horror of dead links; if you spot one, let us know. If you’d like to advertise with us, let us know too.
yours in the dark, or cinematically yours, or…,
Rachel Price, Moving Image Archive News founder