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Press Release Kino Lorber Press Release: Pioneers: First Women Filmmakers (Blu-ray) (1 Viewer)

Ronald Epstein

Senior HTF Member
Jul 3, 1997
Real Name
Ronald Epstein

Kino Lorber Releases
Pioneers: First Women Filmmakers
A Monumental 6-Disc Collection
in Association with the Library of Congress

Featuring 2K and 4K Restorations of More Than 50 Films

Available on Blu-ray and DVD November 20, 2018
Special Features Include an 80 Page Booklet With Essays and Photos and
Eight Short Documentaries featuring Interviews with Historians and Archivists

Executive Producer Illeana Douglas and Curator Shelley Stamp
Are Available for Interviews

"A corrective to our collective amnesia. A thrilling look at the variety of films made by women, most before they won the right to vote." -- Manohla Dargis, The New York Times

"Provides a rare opportunity to see some of the greatest films helmed by early Hollywood's intrepid women... filling in the blanks of the past and reclaiming the medium's forgotten stories.
-- Christina Newland, Village Voice
"An essential series." -- Richard Brody, The New Yorker

New York, NY -- October 15, 2018 -- Kino Classics is proud to announce the Blu-ray and DVD release of Pioneers: First Women Filmmakers, a monumental 6-disc collection, curated by Shelley Stamp (author of Lois Weber in Early Hollywood) and executive produced by Illeana Douglas, celebrating the ground-breaking early female directors of American cinema who helped shape the language of film.

Pioneers: First Women Filmmakers will become available on Blu-ray and DVD November 20, 2018, with a SRP of $99.95 for the Blu-ray and $79.95 for the DVD. The films in this collection are accompanied by music scores composed by Renee C. Baker, The Berklee Silent Film Orchestra, Makia Matsumura, Maud Nelissen, Dana Reason, Aleksandra Vrebalov, and others. Special Features include an 80-page booklet with essays and photos, eight short documentaries featuring Interviews with historians and archivists, and audio commentaries for select films.

Funded by a successful Kickstarter campaign, Pioneers: First Women Filmmakers continues the legacy begun by Pioneers of African-American Cinema, equally ambitious in scale, and every bit as historically significant. Presented in association with the Library of Congress (and drawing from the collections of other world-renowned film archives), Pioneers: First Women Filmmakers is the largest commercially-released video collection of films by women directors, focusing on American films made between 1911 and 1929 -- a crucial chapter of our cultural history.

Featuring 2K and 4K restorations of more than 50 films, including features, shorts and fragments, this collection includes more than 25 hours of material, not only showcasing the work of these under-appreciated filmmakers, but also illuminating the gradual changes in how women directors were perceived (and treated) by the Hollywood establishment. Included are films by such pioneering filmmakers as Ruth Ann Baldwin ('49-'17), Grace Cunard (The Purple Mask), Dorothy Davenport (Linda, The Red Kimona), Alice Guy-Blaché (Algie the Miner, The Little Rangers, Matrimony's Speed Limit, The Ocean Waif), Zora Neale Hurston (ethnographic films), Cleo Madison (Eleanor's Catch), Frances Marion (The Song of Love), Alla Nazimova (Salome), Mabel Normand (Caught in a Cabaret, Mabel's Blunder), Ida May Park (Bread), Nell Shipman (Back to God's Country), Lois Weber (Hypocrites, Suspense, Scandal, Where Are My Children?), Elsie Jane Wilson (The Dream Lady), Marion E. Wong (The Curse of Quon Gwon), and many more.

By showcasing the ambitious, inventive films from the golden age of women directors, we can get a sense of what was lost by the marginalization of women to "support roles" within the film industry.

"The names Alice Guy-Blaché, Lois Weber, Dorothy Davenport Reid, and other significant female

directors deserve to have their names celebrated next to DeMille's, and Griffith's as the early pioneers of Hollywood," said Illeana Douglas. "Just as these woman told powerful stories to raise awareness and educate, we must do the same! I am honored to be a part of Pioneers: First Women Filmmakers, so that these films, and filmmakers, can be put in the pantheon of cinema where they belong."

"Women played an extraordinary role in early filmmaking, but this history has been largely forgotten," said Shelley Stamp, author of Lois Weber in Early Hollywood. "I'm so thrilled that these films have been restored and re-scored so that contemporary audiences will have a chance to see what female filmmakers were up to 100 years ago."

In the early decades of cinema, some of the most innovative and celebrated filmmakers in America were women. Alice Guy-Blaché helped establish the basics of cinematic language, while others boldly continued its development: slapstick queen Mabel Normand (who taught Charlie Chaplin the craft of directing), action star Grace Cunard, and LGBTQ icon Alla Nazimova. Unafraid of controversy, filmmakers such as Lois Weber and Dorothy Davenport Reid tackled explosive issues such as birth control, abortion, and prostitution. This crucial chapter of film history comes alive through the presentation of a wide assortment of films, carefully curated, meticulously restored in 2K and 4K from archival sources, and presented with new musical scores.

"The Library of Congress is honored to partner with Kino Lorber on this landmark and timely celebration of early women filmmakers whose contributions to the evolution of narrative cinema can now be properly placed in their historical context," said Mike Mashon, Head of the Moving Image Section of the Library of Congress.

The collection is presented in association with the Library of Congress, New York Women in Film & Television, George Eastman Museum, UCLA Film & Television Archive, Lobster Films / Film Preservation Associates, the British Film Institute, Archives Canada, the Academy Film Library, Cinémathèque de Toulouse, State Historical Society of North Dakota, and The Film Foundation.


Blu-ray and DVD Street Date: November 20, 2018
Blu-ray SRP: $99.95
DVD SRP: $79.95

1911 - 1929 | U.S. | 1920x1080p (Blu-ray) | 1.33:1 | Silent with English intertitles |
Total Running Time: Approx. 1,710 minutes

Special Features:
Special Features: 80-page booklet with essays and photos
Eight Short Documentaries featuring Interviews with Historians and Archivists
Audio commentaries for select films

Curator: Shelley Stamp
Producer: Bret Wood
Executive Producer: Illeana Douglas

Full List of Films Included in the Collection:

Disc One: Alice Guy-Blaché (Approx. 301 mins.)
Tramp Strategy (1911, dir. Alice Guy-Blaché)
Greater Love Hath No Man (1911, dir. Alice Guy-Blaché)
Algie the Miner (1912, dir. Alice Guy-Blaché)
Falling Leaves (1912, dir. Alice Guy-Blaché)
The Little Rangers (1912, dir. Alice Guy-Blaché)
Canned Harmony (1912, dir. Alice Guy-Blaché)
A Fool and His Money (1912, dir. Alice Guy-Blaché)
The High Cost of Living (1912, dir. Alice Guy-Blaché)
The Coming of Sunbeam (1913, dir. Alice Guy-Blaché) -- Blu-ray only
Burstup Homes' Murder Case (1913, dir. Alice Guy-Blaché) -- Blu-ray only
A House Divided (1913, dir. Alice Guy-Blaché) -- Blu-ray only
Matrimony's Speed Limit (1913, dir. Alice Guy-Blaché)
The Ocean Waif (1916, dir. Alice Guy-Blaché)
The Colleen Bawn (1911, script by Gene Gauntier)
On the Brink (1911, dir. Lois Weber)
The Cricket (1917, dir. Elsie Jane wilson) -- Blu-ray only
Introduction to Series (Documentary)
Alice Guy-Blache (Documentary)
About the Restorations (Documentary)

Disc Two: Lois Weber (Approx. 273 mins.)
From Death to Life (1912, dir. Lois Weber)
Fine Feathers (1912, dir. Lois Weber)
The Rosary (1913, dir. Lois Weber)
Suspense (1913, dir. Lois Weber)
Lost By a Hair (1915, dir. Lois Weber)
Hypocrites (1912, dir. Lois Weber)
Sunshine Molly (1915, dir. Lois Weber)
Idle Wives (1916, dir. Lois Weber)
Too Wise Wives (1921, dir. Lois Weber) -- Blu-ray only
What Do Men Want? (1921, dir. Lois Weber)
Lois Weber (Documentary)

Disc Three: Genre Pioneers (Approx. 284 mins.)
Hazards of Helen Ep. 09: Leap From the Water Tower (1915, dir. Helen Holmes) -- Blu-ray only
Hazards of Helen Ep.13: The Escape on the Fast Freight (1915, dir. Helen Holmes)
The Hazards of Helen Ep. 26: Wild Engine (1915, dir. Helen Holmes)
Purple Mask, The; Episode 5, Part 1 (1917, dir. Grace Cunard)
Purple Mask, The: Episode 12 (Vault of Mystery) (1917, dir. Grace Cunard)
Purple Mask, The; Episode 13, Part 1 (The Leap) (1917, dir. Grace Cunard)
A Daughter of "The Law" (1921, dir. Grace Cunard)
Eleanor's Catch (1916, dir. Cleo Madison)
49 - '17 (1917, dir. Ruth Ann Baldwin)
Caught in a Cabaret (1914, dir. Mabel Normand)
Mabel's Blunder (1914, dir. Mabel Normand)
Mabel and Fatty's Wash Day (1916, dir. Mabel Normand)
Mabel Lost and Won (1915, dir. Mabel Normand) -- Blu-ray only
That Ice Ticket (1923, dir. Angela Murray Gibson)
Ethnographic Films (1929, dir. Zora Neale Hurston)
Mabel Normand (Documentary)
Serial Queens (Documentary)
Disc Four: Social Commentary 1 (Approx. 288 mins.)
Where Are My Children? (1916, dir. Lois Weber)
Her Defiance (1916, dir. Cleo Madison)
When Little Lindy Sang (1916, dir. Lule Warrenton)
Curse of Quon Gwon: When the Far East Mingle with the West (1916, dir. Marion E. Wong)
Scandal (aka Scandal Mongers) (1916, dir. Lois Weber)
The Dream Lady (1918, dir. Elsie Jane Wilson)
Something New (1920, dir. Nell Shipman) -- Blu-ray only
Social Commentary (Documentary)

Disc Five: Social Commentary 2 (Approx. 299 mins.)
The Risky Road (1918, dir. Ida May Park)
Bread (1918, dir. Ida May Park)
Salome (1923, dir. Alla Nazimova)
The Red Kimona (1925, dir. Dorotht Davenport Reid)
Motherhood: Life's Greatest Miracle (1925, dir. Lita Lawrence) -- Blu-ray only
Linda (1929, dir. Dorothy Davenport Reid)

Disc Six: The Feature Film (Approx. 289 mins.)
The Call of the Cumberlands (1916, dir. Julia Crawford Ivers)
Broadway Love (1918, dir. Ida May Park) -- Blu-ray only
Back to God's Country (1919, dir. Nell Shipman)
The Song of Love (1923, dir. Frances Marion)
The End of an Era (Documentary)

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