[Filmfestivalresearch] SCMS SIG “Film Festival SCMS paper (or workshop) submission.”

Jeffrey K. Ruoff Jeffrey.K.Ruoff at dartmouth.edu
Thu Aug 7 13:55:08 CEST 2014

Fellow film festival researchers,

Please see below a paper proposal (abstract, bibliography, and biography) for "A Festival Is Born: Telluride 1974" for SCMS in Montreal in March 2015.

I might be interested in putting together a panel, if others have similar research interests, but would need full proposals by August 15.

All the best,

Jeffrey Ruoff

Film and Media Studies
204 Black Family Visual Arts Center
22 Lebanon Street, HB6194
Dartmouth University
Hanover, NH 03755, USA
Tel: (603) 646-1553
Fax: (603) 646-3848
Http: www.dartmouth.edu/~jruoff<http://www.dartmouth.edu/~jruoff>, www.pilobolusfilm.com<http://www.pilobolusfilm.com/>

250-word abstract:
Film festivals are live events -- not simply movies -- that need to be studied in context.  “A Festival Is Born: Telluride 1974” shows Telluride as a new institution carved out of alliances and existing expertise, capturing the contexts of the new cinéphile festival, its founders, its venues, its audiences, and its genesis in a languishing Colorado mining town.  The paper is based on interviews with participants, archival research in the official Telluride records at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in Los Angeles, and screenings of films on DVD.  Successful festivals do not emerge out of thin air.  “A Festival is Born” traces the origins of Telluride in the archival, exhibition, and programming practices of its founders, James Card of the George Eastman House Museum of Photography and Film in Rochester, New York, Janus Films distributor Bill Pence, and Tom Luddy, director of the Pacific Film Archive at UC-Berkeley.  Telluride pioneered the revival of archival cinema and perfected the live tribute to figures in film history, beginning in 1974 with in-person tributes to Gloria Swanson, Francis Coppola, and, controversially, Leni Riefenstahl.  Telluride was an inspiration to a wave of new North American festivals in the 1970s, including Montreal.  Although today Telluride is a launching pad for Oscar hopefuls, in 1974, Telluride’s agenda was principally historical and aesthetic, more like a cinémathèque or museum than a festival.  Among the most influential of international festivals today, Telluride is virtually unknown in the scholarly literature of film and media studies.

Card, James (1994) Seductive Cinema: The Art of Silent Film. New York: Knopf.

Cowie, Peter (2010) The Berlinale, The Festival. Berlin: Bertz + Fischer.

Iordanova, Dina, ed (2013) The Film Festival Reader. St Andrews: St Andrews Film Books.

Rich, B. Ruby (1998), “Angst and Joy on the Women’s Film Festival Circuit,” in Chick Flicks: Theories and Memories of the Feminist Film Movement, Durham, NC: Duke University Press, pp. 29-39.

Ruoff, Jeffrey (2012) “Programming the Old and the New: Bill and Stella Pence on the Telluride Film Festival.” Coming Soon to a Festival Near You: Programming Film Festivals. Ed. Jeffrey Ruoff.  St. Andrews: St Andrews Film Books, pp. 135-154.

Brief biography:
Jeffrey Ruoff is a film historian and an associate professor at Dartmouth College in New Hampshire, USA.  His 2002 book An American Family: A Televised Life charts the breakdown of distinctions between reality and spectacle, public and private, serial narrative and nonfiction, film and TV.  His 2006 anthology Virtual Voyages: Cinema and Travel was the first book on travelogues.  In 2012, St Andrews published his anthology Coming Soon to a Festival Near You: Programming Film Festivals.

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