Thus endeth the second annual Film Preservation blogathon, For the Love of Film (Noir).
Not to put too fine a point on it, the Siren is knackered.
But it's an exhilarated kind of knackered. Damn, look at all those posts. What a torrent of really amazing writing this topic spawned. We really do love film noir, don't we? Maybe, as Ben Alpers suggested, this genre is more American than cowboys. But the Siren by no means wants to bypass the international component of this here blogathon--Denmark, Sweden, Scotland, Dubai, Spain, Australia, England. It was one great party.
And, with apologies to the Hays Office for the second instance of profanity (as if), damn, look at the money we raised. More than $5,000--in small increments. Person after person hitting the hat with whatever they could spare.
To use a term that is almost entirely alien to film noir, it's heartwarming.
The Siren here takes off her net-veiled hat to Greg Ferrara, the source of the gorgeous visual accoutrements for the blogathon, as well as some behind-the-scenes code-decoding that he's too modest to take credit for.
And she drops a deep curtsy to that torrent of energy, organization and enthusiasm, in whom all points of this blogathon meet, the fabulous Marilyn Ferdinand. She and I will be posting the results of the raffle drawings, final totals etc., later this week.
Now, through the efforts of us all, partners, bloggers and (bless you) donors, there's more than five grand the fine folks at the Film Noir Foundation can count on to restore The Sound of Fury, and bring back Lloyd Bridges, Frank Lovejoy and Cy Endfield, whose career was too short, to their full glory. To refer back to something Eddie Muller of the FNF said, a ghost film no more.
Speaking of Eddie Muller, the Siren here appends his personal thank you.
The Film Noir Foundation is immensely gratified by the remarkable response to this year’s film preservation blogathon. The quality of the contributions was exceptional, and conclusively proved that the best contemporary writing on cinema is happening on the Internet. We will eventually thank, personally, every blogger and every donor, but for right now we’ll bestow all our thanks on the two remarkable women who conceived and executed this extraordinary event: Marilyn Ferdinand and Farran Smith Nehme—no finer friends of film exist. Thank you, ladies!
During much of the blogathon I was in Seattle, presenting another NOIR CITY festival by night and visiting a series of colleges on weekdays, screening clips and discussing film noir, cinema history, and cultural preservation. These face-to-face encounters with the next generation always fill me with hope. At every stop I was greeted by eager youngsters—you’ll recognize them in the mirror—who had light in their eyes and questions on their tongue, crackling with the electricity that comes from plugging into the culture’s cinematic circuitry in a meaningful way.
There was some grousing during the blogathon about the lack of “big” donors this year, leaving this year’s final tally below last year’s, even though there were more individual donors. That doesn’t bother me––I’ve lived long enough to learn many things, and one of the essential truths is that folks who can’t afford to be generous are always the first to share. Every donation, whatever amount, is valuable and appreciated. We raised a portion of the total cost of restoring The Sound of Fury, but in truth it is the spirit with which people rallied in support of the cause—at a difficult time both economically and politically, worldwide—that is even more crucial to our mission than the dollars taken in.
Money is money. You always find it somewhere, somehow. Passion is sacred. Thanks to everyone for sharing their passion this past week. Let’s keep carrying the torch, not only for our favorite art form, but for all the things we cherish and refuse to relinquish.