Home Movie GenresAnimated Movies ‘Paul Robeson: Tribute to an Artist’ & ‘Best Boy’: Oscar Documentaries + Canadian Women in Animation

‘Paul Robeson: Tribute to an Artist’ & ‘Best Boy’: Oscar Documentaries + Canadian Women in Animation

The Flight of the Gossamer Condor Ben Shedd

Next in “Oscar’s Docs, Part Three: Academy Award-Winning Documentaries 1977–1988,” The Flight of the Gossamer Condor, Paul Robeson: Tribute to an Artist, and Best Boy will be screened on Monday, September 24, at 7:30 p.m. at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’ Linwood Dunn Theater in Hollywood.

The 1978 short subject documentary winner The Flight of the Gossamer Condor (top photo) tells how the recently deceased Paul MacCready and his team created the first successful human-powered – i.e., pedal-powered – flight. Producer-director Ben Shedd will participate in a post-screening discussion.

Saul J. Turell’s Paul Robeson: Tribute to an Artist (right), the 1979 short subject documentary winner, gives a glimpse into the life and career of the multitalented – actor, singer, athlete, scholar, linguist – Paul Robeson, who also happened to be a (eventually blacklisted) political activist for liberal causes. Narrated by Sidney Poitier.

Ira Wohl’s Best Boy , the 1979 feature-length documentary winner, shows how Wohl’s aging uncle and aunt Pearl and Max Wohl worry about the future of their middle-aged mentally-impaired son, Philip. Producer-director Wohl will participate in a post-screening discussion.

“Oscar’s Docs” is a comprehensive screening series of every short subject and feature to win the Academy Award for documentary filmmaking since the category was established in 1941.

The retrospective will present the best available prints, often featuring newly struck or restored editions from the documentary collection of the Academy Film Archive. The series will continue each Monday evening through November 19 and will be complemented on many nights with on stage discussions with the filmmakers (schedules permitting).

Tickets to “Oscar’s Docs” are $5 for the general public and $3 for Academy members and students with a valid ID. A limited number of series passes are available for $30 for the general public and $25 for Academy members and students with a valid ID. Tickets and passes are available for purchase by mail at the Academy box office during regular business hours, or online at www.oscars.org. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. All seating is unreserved.

The Linwood Dunn Theater is located at 1313 Vine Street in Hollywood. Free parking is available through the entrance on Homewood Avenue (one block north of Fountain Avenue). For additional information, visit www.oscars.org or call (310) 247-3600.

 

Complete “Oscar’s Docs” screening schedule:

September 17

Gravity Is My Enemy (1977)
Post-film discussion with producer John Joseph

Who Are the DeBolts? And Where Did They Get Nineteen Kids? (1977)
Post-film discussion with producer John Korty

Scared Straight! (1978)
Post-film discussion with producer Arnold Shapiro

September 24

The Flight of the Gossamer Condor (1978)
Post-film discussion with producer Ben Shedd

Paul Robeson: Tribute to an Artist (1979)

Best Boy (1979)
Post-film discussion with producer Ira Wohl

October 1

Karl Hess: Toward Liberty (1980)
Post-film discussion with producers Roland Halle and Peter Ladue

From Mao to Mozart: Isaac Stern in China (1980)
Post-film discussion with producer Murray Lerner

October 8

Close Harmony (1981)

Genocide (1981)
Post-film discussion with producer Arnold Schwartzman

October 15

If You Love This Planet (1982)

Just Another Missing Kid (1982)

October 22

Flamenco at 5:15 (1983)

He Makes Me Feel Like Dancin’ (1983)

October 29

The Stone Carvers (1984)

The Times of Harvey Milk (1984)

November 5

Witness to War: Dr. Charlie Clements (1985)

Broken Rainbow (1985)

Women – for America, for the World (1986)

November 12

Down and Out in America (1986)
Post-film discussion with producer Joseph Feury and director Lee Grant

Artie Shaw: Time Is All You’ve Got (1986)

November 19

Young at Heart (1987)

The Ten-Year Lunch: The Wit and Legend of the Algonquin Round Table (1987)

You Don’t Have to Die (1988)

 

Photos: Shedd Productions, Inc. (The Flight of the Gossamer Condor), Janus Films (Paul Robeson: Tribute to an Artist), International Film Exchange, Ltd. (Best Boy).

When most people think of animation, the words “Disney” and “Pixar” are the first that pop up in their heads.

Since I’m not most people, when I think of animation what pops up in my head is the National Film Board of Canada (NFB).

So, I’m happy to report that the NFB and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences will present the 11th Marc Davis Celebration of Animation, whose theme will be “Canadian Women in Animation.” The event will take place on Wednesday, October 17, at 7:30 p.m. at the Academy’s Samuel Goldwyn Theater in Beverly Hills.

Attendees will include Oscar nominees Janet Perlman, Caroline Leaf, Wendy Tilby, and Amanda Forbis (right, with Tilby), in addition to Academy Award winner Torill Kove. The animators will introduce their short films, and will then take part in a panel discussion moderated by animation critic Charles Solomon.

As per the Academy’s press release, “’Canadian Women in Animation’ will explore the unique and personal visual styles of the five Academy Award-nominated filmmakers, who all work in Canada. The evening will illuminate not only each individual’s approach to animation, but also the collective contributions that the National Film Board of Canada – and particularly its women animators – have made to the art form.”

The panelists’ Oscar-nominated and -winning films to be screened are (film descriptions are from the press release):

The Tender Tale of Cinderella Penguin (1981, above), produced and directed by Perlman, is a fresh look at a centuries-old tale, using a medieval style of illustration to animate the story of Cinderella Penguin, who loses her magic flipper. The film was produced using traditional cel animation.

The Street (1976), directed by Leaf, offers an interpretation of a short story by Mordecai Richler about a family dealing with an old and infirm relative. The film was produced using tempera mixed with oil on glass.

When the Day Breaks (1999), directed by Tilby and Forbis, tells the bittersweet tale of Ruby the pig, whose life takes an unexpected turn after she witnesses the accidental death of a stranger. The exquisitely crafted four-year labor of love uses pencil and paint on photocopies, giving the film a textured look reminiscent of a flickering newsreel.

The Danish Poet (2006), directed by Kove, won the Academy Award for Animated Short Film. The film follows Kasper, a poet who goes on holiday to Norway to meet the famous writer Sigrid Undset. “The Danish Poet” was created from pencil drawings that were digitally scanned and colored, and features backgrounds enhanced with oil-painted skies by Montreal artist Anne Ashton.

Tickets for “Canadian Women in Animation” are $5 for the general public and $3 for Academy members and students with a valid ID. Tickets may be purchased online at www.oscars.org, by mail, or in person at the Academy box office during regular business hours.

Doors will open at 6:30 p.m. All seating is unreserved. The Samuel Goldwyn Theater is located at 8949 Wilshire Boulevard in Beverly Hills. For more information, call (310) 247-3600.

Tilby and Forbis photo: © A.M.P.A.S.

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