Synopses & Reviews
The British Film Institute (BFI) is one of the UK's oldest and most important government-supported cultural institutions. From a modest start in the 1930s it grew rapidly after the war to encompass every kind of film-related activity from production to archiving to exhibition to education. At the beginning of the twenty-first century its turnover was approaching £30m and it had become a central point of reference for anyone whose interest in film stretched beyond what's on at the local multiplex.
There was nothing straightforward about this rise to prominence. It was achieved in the face of government indifference, active obstruction from the film trade, internecine warfare within the organisation and fierce contestation on the part of the BFI's own core public.
Based on intensive original research in the BFI's own voluminous archives and elsewhere, this book examines the interplay of external and internal forces that led to the BFI's unique development as a multi-faceted public body.
"The book is wide ranging in scope, covering not only the BFI, but 75 years of British cultural life, including film societies, the film archive movement and the Museum of the Moving Image." -Sight and Sound, 1 June 2012
"This volume will be a treasure trove for anyone interested in film and the workings of cultural institutions, or more generally in 20th century British film history." -Sight and Sound, 1 June 2012
About the Author
Geoffrey Nowell-Smith is an Honarary Professorial Fellow in the School of History, Queen Mary, University of London, UK.
Christophe Dupin is Senior Administrator at the International Federation of Film Archives in Brussels, Belgium.
Table of Contents
List of Illustrations
Foreword by Sir Denis Forman
1. Foundation and Early Years; Geoffrey Nowell-Smith
2. Post-War Renaissance; Geoffrey Nowell-Smith
3. 'Je t'aime - moi non plus': Ernest Lindgren and Henri Langlois; Christophe Dupin
4. The BFI and Film Exhibition, 1933-1970 - Christophe Dupin
5. The Vanguard of Film Appreciation: The Film Society Movement and Film Culture, 1945-1965; Richard MacDonald
6. From the 1964 Labour Government to the 1970 BFI Crisis; Geoffrey Nowell-Smith
7. The View from the Regions; Melanie Selfe
8. Paddy Whannel and BFI Education; Terry Bolas
9. The 1970s; Geoffrey Nowell-Smith
10. The Smith Years; Geoffrey Nowell-Smith
11. The BFI and Film Production: Half a Century of Innovative Independent Film- Making; Christophe Dupin
12. The BFI and Television; Richard Paterson
13. The Sight and Sound Story; Geoffrey Nowell-Smith
14. A Public Showcase for the BFI: The Museum of the Moving Image; Lorraine Blakemore
15. Towards the Millennium; Geoffrey Nowell-Smith