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August 2000, Week 1


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"Richard J. Leskosky" <[log in to unmask]>
Reply To:
Film and TV Studies Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Thu, 3 Aug 2000 17:44:16 -0500
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At 6:38 PM -0400 8/2/0, [log in to unmask] wrote:
 One look at the number of film societies showing films
>each and every day on college campuses back in the 70s (some colleges had as
>many as ten film societies!) shows us what we're missing today. At the same
>time, the rise of home video, the many years of toil to run a film society by
>the professors and administrators, and the rising lab costs for prints all
>had their toll, so my remarks were meant to be a bit tongue-in-cheek.

The University of Illinois was one of those campuses in the 1970's where at
least a dozen different films would be showing every weekend, every room
that could hold a hundred people and a projector was put into use, and some
years there were films to attend every evening of the week.  Now no one
shows films outside of classes.  None of those organizations ever had
funding from the university, so that did not change in the 1970's.  I was
associated with at least four or five of the more serious groups in one
capacity or another.  The years of toil which Dennis mentioned, the high
rentals, and other costs (advertising, shipping, and so on) all contributed
their demise, but the single most significant factor was that people
(students and faculty) simply stopped going to movies of any sort on
campus.  Some very specialized groups (Indian students, anime fans) screen
videos for their own constituents, but films, no.  I'd lay the blame on
home video  and video games.

--Richard J. Leskosky

Richard J. Leskosky                             Office phone: (217) 244-2704
Assistant Director                      FAX: (217) 333-7310
Unit for Cinema Studies         <>
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
3035 Foreign Languages Building
707 S. Mathews Avenue
Urbana, Illinois 61801

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