Paying Tribute to the Vital Works of America’s First African-American Filmmakers…
As you probably already know, CMH is giving away five copies of “Pioneers of African-American Cinema” this month (through July 30), courtesy of Kino Lorber. This historic 5-disc set features significant, but long overlooked, achievements of early, independent African-American filmmakers — films that not only starred African Americans, but were funded, written, produced, directed, distributed, and often exhibited by African Americans as well. There’s about 20 hours of material in the set, including feature-length films, shorts, fragments, trailers, and interviews with influential historians and archivists — plus an 80-page booklet of essays, photos, notes and more. It’s really an incredible collection that allows us valuable insight into vital film history as well as the legacies of film pioneers Oscar Micheaux, Spencer Williams, James and Eloyce Gist, and more.
That said, we have some good news to share…
First of all, we are very happy to say that TCM will be paying tribute to ‘Pioneers of African-American Cinema’ by airing some of these extraordinary films on two Sunday nights — July 24th and July 31st. These primetime events (starting at 8PM EST and running into late night/early morning) will be hosted by TCM’s Ben Mankiewicz with co-host Jacqueline Stewart who is a Professor of Cinema and Media Studies at The University of Chicago. Seven films and eight shorts will be showcased from the ‘Pioneers’ collection including Oscar Micheaux’s Within Our Gates (1920), Richard Norman’s Regeneration (1923), Frank Perugini’s The Scar of Shame (1929), and Micheaux’s Birthright (1939).
But that’s not all. In celebration of the DVD/Blu-Ray release of ‘Pioneers of African-American Cinema’ on Tuesday (July 26), Kino Lorber has created a special 25%-off coupon code CMHS16 JUST for CMH fans — that can be used to purchase ‘Pioneers’ AND/OR any other DVD/Blu-Ray products at KinoLorber.com from now until July 31, 2016!
Take an additional 25% off your online order at KinoLorber.com. Apply coupon code CMHS16 during your online checkout. Valid through July 31, 2016.
And for your reference, here’s what the ‘Pioneer’s DVD/Blu-Ray Collection includes:
* New digital restorations of over a dozen feature films, plus shorts, fragments, trailers, documentary footage, archival interviews and audio recordings
* Contemporary interviews with historians and film preservationists
* 80-page booklet with essays and detailed film notes
* Musical scores by DJ Spooky, Max Roach, Alloy Orchestra, Samuel Waymon, Makia Matsumura, Donald Sosin and others
Disc One (Total Running Time 282 minutes): Two Knights of Vaudeville Ebony Film Co., 1915. 11 minutes. Music by Donald Sosin Mercy the Mummy Mumbled (BLU-RAY ONLY) Ebony Film Co., 1918. 12 minutes. Music by the Alloy Orchestra. A Reckless Rover Ebony Film Co., 1918. 14 minutes. Music by Donald Sosin. Within Our Gates Oscar Micheaux, 1920. 73 minutes. Music by Paul D. Miller, aka DJ Spooky. The Symbol of the Unconquered: A Story of the KKKOscar Micheaux, 1920. 59 minutes. Music by Max Roach. By Right of Birth Lincoln Motion Picture Co., 1921. 4 minutes. Music by Donald Sosin.Body and Soul Oscar Micheaux, 1925. 93 minutes. Music by Paul D. Miller, aka DJ Spooky.Screen Snapshots (Micheaux footage, 1920, 1 minute) Bonus: An Introduction (7 minutes) Bonus: The Films of Oscar Micheaux (8 minutes)
Disc Two (Total Running Time – 259 minutes): RegenerationRichard E. Norman, 1923. 11 minutes. Music by Donald Sosin.The Flying Ace Richard E. Norman, 1928. 65 minutes. Music by Mont Alto Motion Picture Orchestra. Ten Nights in a Bar RoomCPFC, 1926. 64 minutes. Music by Donald Sosin. Rev. S.S. Jones Home Movies Rev. Solomon Sir Jones, 1924-1926. 16 minutes. Music by Andrew Simpson. The Scar of Shame Frank Peregini, 1929. 86 minutes. Music by Makia Matsumura Bonus: The Color Line (5 minutes) Bonus: Ten Nights in a Bar Room – An Introduction (4 minutes) Bonus: About the Restoration (8 minutes)
Paul Robeson as ‘Sylvester ‘in Oscar Micheaux’s Body and Soul (frame enlargement), courtesy Kino Lorber
Disc Three (Total Running Time – 253 minutes): Eleven P.M.Richard Maurice, 1928. 60 minutes. Music by Rob Gal. Hell-Bound Train James and Eloyce Gist, 1930. 50 minutes. Restored by S. Torriano Berry. Music by Samuel D. Waymon.Verdict Not Guilty James and Eloyce Gist, 1934. 8 minutes. Restored by S. Torriano Berry. Music by Samuel D. Waymon.Heaven-Bound Travelers (BLU-RAY ONLY) James and Eloyce Gist, 1935. 15 minutes. Restored by S. Torriano Berry. Music by Samuel D. Waymon. The Darktown Revue Oscar Micheaux, 1931. 18 minutes. The Exile Oscar Micheaux, 1931. 78 minutes.Hot Biskits Spencer Williams, 1931. 10 minutes.
Disc Four (Total Running Time – 272 minutes): The Girl from Chicago Oscar Micheaux, 1932. 70 minutes. Ten Minutes to Live Oscar Micheaux, 1932. 58 minutes. Veiled AristocratsOscar Micheaux, 1932. 48 minutes. Birthright Oscar Micheaux, 1938. 73 minutes. Bonus: Veiled Aristocrats Trailer (4 minutes) Bonus: Birthright Trailer (4 minutes) Bonus: We Work Again(BLU-RAY ONLY) – WPA Documentary (1937, 15 minutes)
Disc Five (Total Running Time – 243 minutes): The Bronze Buckaroo Richard Kahn, 1939. 58 minutes. Zora Neale Hurston Fieldwork Footage (excerpt) Zora Neale Hurtston, 1928. 3 minutes. Commandment Keeper Church, Beaufort South Carolina, May 1940 (excerpt) Zora Neale Hurston, 1940. 15 minutes. The Blood of Jesus Spencer Williams, 1941. 56 minutes. Dirty Gertie from Harlem U.S.A. Spencer Williams, 1946. 60 minutes. Moses Sisters Interview Pearl Bowser, 1978. 32 minutes. Bonus: Texas Tyler Promo Film with Ossie Davis (1985, 6 minutes) Bonus: The Films of Zora Neale Hurston (2 minutes) Bonus: The Films of Spencer Williams (7 minutes) Bonus: The End of an Era (4 minutes)
A Big Thank You to Kino Lorber for creating this important, historic collection (and for offering a special discount to our fans), and of course to TCM for airing some of these landmark films!
–Annmarie Gatti for Classic Movie Hub