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June 1996, Week 1


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DAN STREIBLE <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Tue, 4 Jun 1996 08:59:59 -0500
text/plain (41 lines)
Two Otto Preminger questions.
1.  Are there Preminger papers available anywhere?  The Academy Library
had no leads.  The Wisconsin State Hist. archives has a partial
collection of production records, mostly on films of the late 60s
(including the immortal SKIDOO!) But I found no others.
Otto Preminger Films, Ltd. in NY also had no leads (which makes me
believe there are none.  They indicated OP liked to throw everything
away.)  (THis is the organization that got Spike Lee's CLOCKERS to change
poster design because its body outline too closely resembled Saul Bass'
poster for Preminger's ANATOMY OF A MURDER.)
2.  What exactly is the Otto-Preminger-Institut in Austria?  The only
reference I found to it indicate that it successfully fought for the
right to exhibit the German film COUNCIL IN HEAVEN in Austria.  The
European Court of Human Rights overturned a previous EC or Austrian order
to let the film be banned because it offended religious sensibilities.
I can understand that a watchdog/legal defense group that sought to
protect free expression rights for mass media would conceivably adopt
Preminger's name (esp. one in his native place).  But the Preminger Films
company, which closely guards his copyright, and the Preminger family
were both unaware of the Institut.  I'd appreciate any information about
the Institut or the COUNCIL IN HEAVEN case (legal proceedings were
published, but I haven't seen them yet).
Has the auterist vogue for Preminger as a canonized filmmaker come and
gone completely?  His name seems to be invoked mostly as the
producer-director who broke the Production Code, but there seems to be
less interest in the particular films.
To me he'll always be Batman's Mr. Freeze.
Dan Streible
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