March 3, 2008
Symposium dates: March 26-29, 2008
New York University and the Department of Cinema Studies at the Tisch School of the Arts will host a unique festival and conference on the preservation, historical value, and creative use of orphan films. Attracting more than 300 media artists, curators, archivists, scholars, preservation experts, students, collectors, and film enthusiasts from 17 nations, the biennial event is being held in New York City for the first time.
The 6th Orphan Film Symposium, March 26-29, will be held at the Cantor Film Center, located at 36 East 8th Street. The three-day, four-night program will be devoted to panel discussions and screenings having to do with saving and studying an eclectic group of neglected films. These moving images, shot in 16 countries dating back more than 100 years, range from a French film found in an Australian archive (The Invisible Men, 1906) to a Mexican filmmakers documentary made in the Ukraine (Naomi Umans Kalendar, 2008). Unlike most events of this kind, Orphan Film Symposium participants will take their meals together in order to foster an environment in which new knowledge is generated and new partnerships made.
This on-going collaboration of archives, universities, artists, and laboratories continues to bring amazing but forgotten film and video artifacts back into the public light, said NYU Cinema Studies professor Dan Streible, director of the Orphan Film Symposium. Since the first gathering at the University of South Carolina in 1999, the number of supporters and participants has grown steadily. According to Streible, the participation of private-sector companies and non-profit organizations has lifted the project into a year-round research and preservation initiative.
Companies contributing film and video preservation services to this years program include Kodak, Colorlab, Haghefilm, SAMMA Systems, Universal Studios, Ascent Media, Technicolor, and other labs. Partners from the non-profit sector include the Double R Foundation, the Maxine Greene Foundation, Martin Scorseses Film Foundation, NYU Libraries, Filmoteca Española, and the Library of Congress.
This years screenings address the broad theme of the state. Among the highlights are premieres of newly preserved works, including:
Archivists coined the term orphan film to refer to motion pictures abandoned by their owners. More generally, the term refers to any film outside of the commercial mainstream: home movies, silent films, independent documentaries, newsreels, outtakes, industrial and educational films, censored material, experimental works, and others.
The Symposium is sold out, but NYU will provide a live blog throughout. Audio recordings of talks will be freely available at the end of the Symposium on the Orphan Film Symposium website: www.nyu.edu/orphanfilm.
Type: Press Release
Press Contact: Richard Pierce | (212) 998-6796