Claude Lelouch (A Man and a Woman) and François Reichenbach (Arthur Rubinstein – The Love of Life) co-directed Grenoble, the feature-length documentarythat chronicles the 1968 Winter Olympics. The beauty and high emotionalism of competitive sports are captured in intimate, impressionistic details without narration or dialog. Le... Read more
On February 6, 1936, the IV Olympic Winter Games officially opened in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany. This commemorative postcard sent to the actress Katharine Hepburn shows the picturesque town in the Bavarian Alps that played host to more than 600 athletes from 28 countries.
One of the competition’s most notable triumphs was that of Norwegian figure skater Sonja Henie, wh... Read more
In the 1936 classic Swing Time, Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers wander through this winter wonderland singing a lament to romantic frustration. The song, “A Fine Romance (Sarcastic Love Song),” has them trading lines like “We should be like a couple of hot tomatoes / But you’re as cold as yesterday’s mashed potatoes.” Now a staple of the American songbook, it was written by master composer Jero... Read more
It’s the 50th anniversary of My Fair Lady, winner of eight Academy Awards and one of the best-loved Hollywood musicals of all time. This exuberant print by legendary caricaturist Al Hirschfeld perfectly captures the famous scene at Ascot Racecourse, where Cockney flower seller Eliza Doolittle (Audrey Hepburn) makes her high society debut. She is accompanied by her tutor, phonetics professor Henry Higgins (... Read more
On Friday, July 21, 1933, in preparation for the production of Queen Christina, Greta Garbo sat for a costume test with cinematographer William H. Daniels. This piece is an excerpt from the nine-minute long test.
Directed by Rouben Mamoulian, Queen Christina premiered 80 years ago on December 26, 1933 in New York and was released nationwide in 1934.
The costume test was preserved by the Academy Film Archive in 2012 through “Project Film-to-Film,” aimed at preserving as many films on film as possible over a two-year period. The project allowed the Academy to make new elements for over 500 projects in the Archive’s collection.
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As we eagerly await the announcement of this year’s Academy Award nominees, this week we take a look back at High Noon (1952), which earned seven Oscar nominations including nods for Directing, Writing, and Best Motion Picture.
These pages from director Fred Zinnemann’s shooting script for High Noon (which was written by Carl Foreman and produced by Stanley Kramer) illustrate how the filmmaker utilized his copy of the screenplay to thoroughly documen... Read more
This amazingly detailed map is a rare piece of production art that made it out of the jungle after the filming of Francis Ford Coppola’s Vietnam War epic, Apocalypse Now (1979). It traces the journey of Captain Willard, played by Martin Sheen, down the coast of South Vietnam and up a winding river into Cambodia as he pursues the insane, rogue Colonel Kurtz, played by Marlon Brando.
In addition to his groundbreaking film title sequences for Vertigo, Psycho, The Man with the Golden Arm and Spartacus, and the television anthology Alcoa Premiere, Saul Bass created iconic logos and trademarks for many businesses and corporations ranging from United Airlines and Lawry’s Foods to the Girl Scouts and AT&T, for which he crafted the famous globe still in use today. Bass’s logo for Alcoa, the Aluminum Company of America (that introduced aluminum foil in 1910)... Read more
Based on a children’s parable by British poet laureate Ted Hughes, The Iron Giant(1999) tells an absorbing story about friendship, peace, and tolerance in the face of Cold War paranoia. Combining computer and traditional cel animation to achieve a retro, 2-D aesthetic, it was the first feature by director Brad Bird (The Incredibles, Ratatouille), who shot the film in widescreen as an homage to 1950s CinemaScope sci-fi spectacles. Along with dazzling lighting effects and the voicing tale... Read more
Throughout the silent era (celebrated by the Academy this month with A Century Ago: The Films of 1913), sheet music for movie-inspired songs brought together the public’s fascination with the silver screen and love of popular music. Written by Tin Pan Alley songwriter Charles McCarron in 1915, “Those Keystone Comedy Cops” capitalized on the popularity of the bumbling policemen who had bee... Read more