Orphan Film Symposium in Paris

The Cinémathèque française and NYU Cinema Studies host a special edition of the Orphan Film Symposium, in Paris, March 2-4, 2017.  The theme: Tests, essais et expérimentations.

We invite you to join us. If you would forward this news to your colleagues, I will be grateful.

The full program (30 presenters) and registration information are available here: www.nyu.edu/orphanfilms.  (Attached too.)

Films ranging from 1894 to 1994, from France, the US, UK, Poland, Italy, Denmark, Lithuania, Serbia, Algeria, Belgium, India, Mexico, and the Netherlands. See a wondrous variety of outtakes, kinetoscope movies, camera tests, partially edited newsreels, 90mm scientific studies, 35mm medical films, Super 8 experiments, 16mm avant garde pieces, images inédites, rushes, unfinished films, silent cinema, unreleased works, never-used newsfilm, amateur narratives, home movies, military footage, student films, promotional documentaries, early sound newsreel tests, and restored classics.

The symposium will take place during three mornings (9am to 1pm) at the Cinémathèque française during Toute la mémoire du monde, International Festival of Film Restoration (March 1-5).

Registration — open to all — gives access to both the Orphan Film Symposium and all five days and nights of Festival Toute la Mémoire.  Students and underemployed persons may pay half price.

And please save the dates for the 11th Orphan Film Symposium, April 11-14, 2018, when we return to Museum of the Moving Image for the big biennial edition. Theme and call for proposals forthcoming in April 2017.


IAMHIST has the pleasure to announce that Shelley Stamp is the winner of the 2017 Michael Nelson Prize. She convinced the jury with ‘Lois Weber in Early Hollywood‘ and will join us at the 2017 iamhist conference in Paris.

Shelley Stamp is Professor of Film and Digital Media at the University of California, Santa Cruz and author of Movie-Struck Girls: Women and Motion Picture Culture after the Nickelodeon; co-editor of American Cinema’s Transitional Era: Audiences, Institutions, Practices; and founding editor of Feminist Media Histories: An International Journal.

Among early Hollywood’s most renowned filmmakers, Lois Weber was considered one of the era’s “three great minds” alongside D. W. Griffith and Cecil B. DeMille. Despite her accomplishments, Weber has been marginalized in relation to her contemporaries, who have long been recognized as fathers of American cinema. Drawing on a range of materials untapped by previous historians, Shelley Stamp offers the first comprehensive study of Weber’s remarkable career as director, screenwriter, and actress. Lois Weber in Early Hollywood provides compelling evidence of the extraordinary role that women played in shaping American movie culture.

Weber made films on capital punishment, contraception, poverty, and addiction, establishing cinema’s power to engage topical issues for popular audiences. Her work grappled with the profound changes in women’s lives that unsettled Americans at the beginning of the twentieth century, and her later films include sharp critiques of heterosexual marriage and consumer capitalism. Mentor to many women in the industry, Weber demanded a place at the table in early professional guilds, decrying the limited roles available for women on-screen and in the 1920s protesting the growing climate of hostility toward female directors. Stamp demonstrates how female filmmakers who had played a part in early Hollywood’s bid for respectability were in the end written out of that industry’s history. Lois Weber in Early Hollywood is an essential addition to histories of silent cinema, early filmmaking in Los Angeles, and women’s contributions to American culture.

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