By Eric Kohn | Eric Kohn June 8, 2010 at 7:21AM
Much of the day-to-day news of the film world revolves around this or that breaking production development: Guillermo del Toro's not directing "The Hobbit," Sandra Bullock and Ryan Reynolds are re-teaming for another blockbuster, Jamie Bell might be the new "Spider-Man," and so on. However, a closer look at the endless stream of updates reveals the occasional preservationist accomplishment worthy of mass media consumption: The newly restored "Metropolis," say, or that treasure trove of American silent films recently unearthed in New Zealand. The Orphan Film Symposium, covered on this blog and by Bryce Renninger for indieWIRE, regularly showcases the depth of research happening within the archival community. For these ongoing efforts to deepen the public's perception of film history, we owe much to the tireless efforts of moving image archivists around the world.
When they're not hiding among film canisters, the people involved with this type of work come together to share their discoveries and discuss their craft. Now that there are at least two degree programs for the discipline (at NYU and UCLA) and one certificate program (at the George Eastman House, where it can be combined with another year of studies at the University of Rochester for a Master's Degree), the future of archival work looks very positive, despite the ongoing struggle to understand its role among changing technological demands. The Association of Moving Image Archivists (AMIA) has been grappling with these issues for two decades. In commemoration of its twentieth anniversary, AMIA is holding a short film and video competition to "highlight the importance of preserving our moving image heritage." The details, from the e-mail release, follow:
...Increasingly, our cultures are reflected through moving images - as news, entertainment, and historical artifact. This year, AMIA celebrates its 20th anniversary as an association of people dedicated to preserving those moving images. This competition will provide an opportunity to emphasize the importance of saving our moving images as important educational, historical, and cultural resources. It's about originality, imagination and the ability to engage the audience in 180 seconds or less.
The competition is open to everyone -- so share this information with friends, colleagues, students ... anyone you know with an interest in preserving our moving image heritage.
One Grand Prize: In addition to receiving $2,500(USD) prize, the winning submission will be announced on October 27 as part of the World Day of Audiovisual Heritage celebration, and will be screened at the AMIA 2010 Archival Screening Night, November 5, 2010 in Philadelphia, PA. It will also be featured on the AMIA website.
Runner-up & Finalists: The runner-up will receive $1,000(USD). The runner up and finalists' productions will be included on the AMIA website.
Submissions will be accepted beginning June 15, 2010 and ending August 30, 2010. The winner and runner-up will be selected by vote of AMIA members from finalist entries posted on the AMIA Website.
For more information, rules and submission guidelines, go to: