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June 1994


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Gene Stavis <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Tue, 14 Jun 1994 10:45:43 PDT
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To Daniel -
It is ironic to me how, for decades, the film industry willfully destroyed
all the elements of a film which did not make it into the final print (and
often the prints and negatives themselves.)
Now there seems to be a fetish to discover every trace of the process which
went into a final film. "restored" versions, "directors cuts", "alternate
takes", etc.
While I would be the first to champion, for archival purposes, the retention
of as much as the filmmaking process as would be feasible, it is disturbing
to note the hunger for these production elements which are, largely, the
cast-offs of the process. Perhaps, its a result of the craze for interactive
contact with the great film-makers. But I believe these film-makers would be
largely horrified at this tampering with their work.
Alternate dialogue sequences, for marginal movies at best? Let's get real!
Shouldn't we be spending our time, energy and resources in making sure that
the films themselves and not their trail of detritus is preserved first. As I
write this post, complete films are being lost!
Gene Stavis, School of Visual Arts - NYC