posted June 13, 2019
In January 1972, a 29-year-old Aretha Franklin, already renowned in soul behind five Grammys and 11 No. 1 singles on the Billboard charts, returned to her roots with two evenings of riveting gospel worship in the run-down New Temple Missionary Baptist Church in Watts, Los Angeles. The soaring celebrations of faith became legendary moments in popular-music history. They also produced a long, confused saga of film loss and retrieval.
posted June 3, 2019
The Danish Film Institute has launched a major effort to preserve and disseminate the country’s silent-film output. With 30 million Danish kroner (about $US4.5-million) from three foundations, the Institute has begun to digitize the whole of the remaining early movie heritage. That amounts to some 415 titles from the “golden age of Danish silent film” — about 350 hours of viewing — that archivists at the Institute are digging out of storage to restore, preserve, and disseminate through screenings and online postings.
posted May 2, 2019
The Council on Library and Information Resources, an independent, nonprofit organization based in Arlington, Virginia, that works to enhance research, teaching, and learning environments in collaboration with libraries, cultural institution, and communities of higher learning, has awarded its Recordings at Risk grants to 20 institutions. Among the 20 awards, 9 relate to audiovisual collections, and they range in value from $10,908 to $50,000.
posted April 13, 2019
To publicize a film-archive service, a well-written, attractively presented blog may serve as well as a paid advertisement. The Huntley Film Archives, based in rural Herefordshire, has recently begun to take that route to spreading the word about its holdings, and its blog — The Voice from the Vaults — makes for fascinating reading whether or not you are looking to buy film clips.
posted April 3, 2019
The San Francisco Silent Film Festival, the leading North American event of its kind, takes place May 1-5 at the city’s historic Castro Theatre, and among the event’s great attractions, this year, is the screening of a restoration of "The Signal Tower," a 1924 railroad drama set in the picturesque redwoods of northern California.
posted March 4, 2019
If you wonder how to film on 3mm cameras, or safeguard born-digital media content, or navigate the choppy waters of new-media creation and preservation, you will find leads on AMIA Authors, a recently launched website of items about moving-image archiving.
posted February 8, 2019
Is the archiving profession threatened by an overuse of temporary appointments that deprives entrants to the field of long-term career prospects? Many observers of the profession agree with a few temporarily hired special-collections archivists at the University of California at Los Angeles who believe such a threat does exist.
posted December 28, 2018
The history of black Americans in film would have been far less well understood if not for the lifetime of research by Thomas Cripps. The leading American scholar of the black presence in film, he died in Baltimore from complications of Alzheimer’s disease on 17 September 2018, his 86th birthday.
posted December 20, 2018
U.S. Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden announced on 12 December 2018 the annual selection of 25 influential American motion pictures to be added to the National Film Registry of the Library of Congress. Induction marks films’ cultural, historic, and aesthetic importance to the nation’s film heritage, and being added to the registry ensures that chosen films are permanently preserved.
posted November 26, 2018
If you object to the way a director or studio revises a film you particularly like, and the original is not readily available, why not recreate the original and distribute it among fellow enthusiasts? All you need to do is to stitch together the original from available elements, and probably spruice them up digitally into modern, high-tech shape.