“Movies touch our hearts and awaken our vision, and change the way we see things. They take us to other places, they open doors and minds. Movies are the memories of our life time, we need to keep them alive.”
With the premiere of the restored version of Robert Altman’s 1982 film “Come Back to the Five and Dime, Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean” on March 3rd at the Billy Wilder Theater in the Hammer Museum in Westwood, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA) continues its mission to help restore some of the greatest cinema classics of our time. The late director’s film has been meticulously restored with funding by The Film Foundation and the Hollywood Foreign Press and is part of the 2011 UCLA Festival of Preservation.
When you consider that half the American films made before 1950 and 90% of films made before 1929 have been lost forever, film preservation has never had a more urgent need.
The Film Foundation which director Martin Scorsese founded in 1990 has been at the forefront of film preservation. The nonprofit organization provides substantial annual support for restoration and preservation at the nation’s leading film archives. Instrumental in raising awareness of the urgent need to preserve films it has helped with generous donors such as the Hollywood Foreign Press to save more than 545 films. This “hands-on” preservation ensures that these great films which are not only works of art but historical records and essential representations of our culture will survive for future generations.
Since first contributing to The Film Foundation fifteen years ago, the Hollywood Foreign Press has become a major supporter donating 3 million dollars. The grant for 2010 alone amounted to $350,000. The donations by the HFPA have contributed to the preservation of more than 75 motion pictures by such noted directors as Stanley Kubrick, John Ford, Alfred Hitchcock, Jean Renoir and John Cassavetes.
“It means a great deal to us,” says Jennifer Ahn, the Managing Director of The Film Foundation. “The HFPA is so instrumental in preservation of film history. They put an enormous amount of effort and funds to this mission and it is a huge part of what The Film Foundation does. We highly value and praise the Hollywood Foreign Press Association for this invaluable public service”.
Donations from the HFPA in 2004 helped restore one of 1939’s Best Picture nominees, Lewis Milestone’s “Of Mice and Men”, as well as Jean Renoir’s 1951 classic, “The River.” In 2005 the HFPA grant contributed to the restoration of Orson Welles brooding 1948 version of “Macbeth”, Nicholas Ray’s “Born to be Bad” from 1950, Otto Preminger’s searing indictment of drug addiction in his 1955 film, “The Man with the Golden Arm” and Melvin van Peebles controversial blaxploitation 70’s film ,”Sweet Sweetback’s Baad Asssss Song”.
In 2006 the 1948 Technicolor masterpiece “The Red Shoes” by directors Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger was magnificently restored. Scorsese at the time expressed his gratitude to the input from the Hollywood Foreign Press. “There’s no question that its one of the most beautiful films ever made and those of us who love film owe the HFPA a deep debt of gratitude,” he said.
In 2007 HFPA contributions helped restore Lawrence Olivier’s 1955’s film version of “Richard III”, while in 2009 the focus turned to some of Robert Altman’s outstanding and genre bending work including his little known1969 film, “That Cold Day in the Park” and “Come Back to the Five and Dime, Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean”.
The association between the HFPA and The Film Foundation continues with more recent preservation efforts dedicated to such landmark films as 1933’s “King Kong”, Elia Kazan’s “America America” and Michael Curtiz’s high-voltage 1950 drama “The Breaking Point”.
The grants to The Film Foundation were a significant part of the more than 12 million dollars which the Hollywood Foreign Press Association donated in the last fifteen years to entertainment related charities as well as founding scholarships and other programs for future film and television professionals. In the year 2010 the total donation was $ 1,541, 000, the largest ever in the organizations history.
|1st March 2011,|