Carlyle Group to buy photo, video distributor Getty Images in $3.3 billion deal

By Associated Press

WASHINGTON — The Carlyle Group, one of the biggest private equity firms in the world, plans to buy a controlling stake in the photo and video distributor Getty Images in a $3.3 billion deal that gives the Getty family and management a larger share of the company.

Carlyle Group said Wednesday that it will partner with co-founders Mark Getty and Jonathan Klein and the Getty family in buying the company from another private equity firm, Hellman & Friedman.

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Projection Publique: Chris Marker, explorateur du siècle

Il est mort le jour de ses 91 ans, le 29 juillet. Jusqu’au dernier moment, il aura surveillé le score de son film Chat écoutant la musique sur YouTube. Rien d’anecdotique à cela, mais une curiosité sans fin pour les techniques modernes et un amour des chats, deux des nombreuses facettes de l’homme qui avait choisi de s’appeler, le plus souvent, Chris Marker.

Marker aura été, toute sa vie, un « homme de son temps ». Tellement en phase avec le présent qu’il n’aura cessé d’en explorer toutes les dimensions, dans l’espace, la durée, les idées et les techniques. Avant et mieux que d’autres, il aura compris les périls de la médiatisation, et choisi de ne pas apparaître en public. Après la mort d’un chat particulièrement cher, il prendra l’apparence de celui-ci, nommé Guillaume-en-Egypte, pour émettre commentaires, apologues et facéties. Lors de la mobilisation-réflexe après le 21 avril 2002 qui vit une foule spontanément descendre dans la rue suite à l’arrivée de Le Pen au deuxième tour des présidentielles, il reconnaitra comme un signe fraternel la présence parmi la foule de chats, et de masques de chats – ceux du peintre et street artist Thoma Vuille – faisant écho aux chats ornant les murs de la ville. Ce sera son dernier long métrage, Chats perchés (2004), aux confins du journalisme militant et du cinéma, avec les ressources de la vidéo légère dont il aura toute sa vie accompagné les mutations.

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What’s new with Docuseek2

The What’s new with Docuseek2  blog will document the progress of the new Docuseek2 website. Docuseek2 is a search tool into the collections of some of the best documentary and social issue films available in the U.S.; it is also a reference tool for the collections; and an e-commerce site, too. Registered users will be able to preview titles and purchase streaming rights at the site, and view the media at Docuseek2 or embed a player on their course management page or library site.

Keep reading…

Jonathan Rosenbaum’s 1981 Review of “Tighten Your Belts”

From The Soho News, October 6, 1981. I’m embarrassed to confess that over three decades later, I have no recollection at all about Tighten Your Belts, Bite the Bullet apart from what I wrote about it, although I’m happy to report that the film is still in distribution, and available from Icarus Films. — J.R.

September 25: Grateful as I am to see both the 48-minute Tighten Your Belts, Bite the Bullet and the 54-minute Resurgence: The Movement for Equality versus the Ku Klux Klan in one dynamite double-bill, I can’t help but wonder if the only reason why they’re shown in the above order is that the latter is six minutes longer. I bring this up only because Tighten Your Belts strikes me as conceivably the most intelligent, powerful, and informative rabble-rousing leftist film that I’ve seen in years, and can’t imagine why the festival organizers didn’t want to maximize its impact by showing it second. …

Tighten Your Belts, codirected by James Gaffney, Martin Lucas, and Jonathan Miller over four and a half years and costing a third as much as Resurgence, is a stunning example of how this work and economy can pay off in dividends. Expertly incorporating animation, live-action interviews, and other footage of diverse kinds with a good jazz score (by Nick Scarim), the film has the rare virtue of using all its materials to build a clear linear argument that progresses at every stage. Contrasting the recent fiscal crises in New York and Cleveland and the antithetical approaches taken by their mayors, the filmmakers delineate and document the capitulation of New York to the caprices of banks and the resistance of the city administration of Cleveland to corporate takeover, sparked by the forging of a broad popular front by the exciting Dennis Kucinich.

Exemplary in its clean, polemical construction, Tighten Your Belts, Bite the Bullet deftly incorporates a specific popular struggle – the 18-month campaign in Brooklyn’s Northside to keep a firehouse – into its overall argument, without succumbing to any of the temptations of a political travelogue. In other words, it means business. It sends you out of your seats making you believe that positive change is actually possible – and that if any single force finally succeeds in radicalizing the American working class, it may well be the good ole Reagan administration.

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From Real | Reel Journal: “John Akomfrah and The Black Audio Film Collective: A (Trans)National Treasure”

By Chloë Penman

John Akomfrah is a black-British filmmaker, coming out of a tradition of politically engaged and aesthetically minded experimental art cinema. In her Guardian article, John Akomfrah: Migration and Memory, Sukhdev Sanhu states that “John Akomfrah (is) widely recognised as one of Britain’s most expansive and intellectually rewarding film makers”. Akomfrah was part of the Black Audio Film Collective (BAFC), a group of filmmakers who made films and gallery installations between the years of 1982-1998. InA Statement by the Black Audio Film Collective John Akomfrah focuses his, and the collective’s, inquiry around the specificity of black independent filmmaking. “What does ‘black independent filmmaking mean’?” he asks. He has spent his career answering that question, using theoretical insights to shape his particular brand of politically, ethically and socially engaged cinema. While researching this article it has become clear that Akomfrah cannot be separated from the BAFC legacy, nor can that legacy exist without Akomfrah. I tried to separate the two, toying with the idea of writing about the BAFC in a separate piece. But the truth is that Akomfrah’s oeuvre and links with the BAFC are an evolutionary story, his works and collaborations are enmeshed. Colin Prescod remarks on this: “I’m struck with the fact that I’m seeing images in Mnemosyne (2010) that began to emerge in Handsworth Songs (1986), I’m struck with the wholeness of your artistic effort”. Akomfrah follows a poetic logic that has seen his work evolve and link over time.

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Chantal Akerman’s “From the Other Side” now streaming on Amazon

Using technology developed for the military, the flow of illegal immigration into San Diego has been stemmed. But for the desperate, there are still the dangerous deserts of Arizona, where Chantal Akerman shifts her focus.

See it on Amazon here

From The Guardian: Artist David Weiss dies aged 66

Alex Needham

The Swiss artist David Weiss has died aged 66. Weiss earned an international reputation in partnership with fellow artist Peter Fischli, with whom he started working in 1979. The pair had a retrospective at London’s Tate Modern in 2006 and were recently ranked 26th in a list of the world’s 100 most important artists by the German publication Manager Magazin.

Based in Zurich, Fischli and Weiss’s work took in sculpture, installation, film and photography, exploring what critics called “the poetics of banality” with a deadpan wit. Their first work was a series of photographs ranging from a fashion show to a car crash in which sausages took the roles of people. Their most famous piece was a half-hour film made in 1987 called Der Lauf der Dinge (The Way Things Go), which set household objects such as kettles and stepladders in a chain reaction of increasingly manic slapstick scenes. A subsequent advert by Honda borrowed from it heavily.

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UCLA’s Documentary Salon: A Tribute to Chris Marker (5/8)

Chris MarkerFor more details on the screenings, visit the UCLA GSA website here.

Event Date: May 8, 2012 – 7:30pm

Location: The James Bridges Theater, Melnitz Hall 1409, UCLA

Featuring: ONE DAY IN THE LIFE OF ANDREI ARSENEVICH (Chris Marker, 1999) and TO CHRIS MARKER, AN UNSENT LETTER (Emiko Omori, 2012)

Co-Curated by Marina Goldovskaya and Samuel B. Prime
A Melnitz Movies and Documentary Salon Co-Presentation

Co-sponsored by the French Film & TV Office, Consulate General of France in Los Angeles, join us for a post-show Q&A with director Emiko Omori moderated by Marina Goldovskaya!

The Film Society of Lincoln Center on the death of Amos Vogel


The leading figure of modern American film culture, a rebellious champion of independent and international cinema and the co-founder of the New York Film Festival, Amos Vogel died yesterday in New York, the city where – in 1947 – he created the landmark film society Cinema 16.

From basement screenings in the 1940s to the grand halls of Lincoln Center in the 1960s, Amos Vogel shepherded alternative cinema to increasingly ravenous audiences at a time when discerning moviegoers were discovering influential auteurs. “The man was a giant,” Martin Scorsese told the Film Society of Lincoln Center last night, summing up the life of Vogel, who died Tuesday morning at the age of 91.

Born Amos Vogelbaum in Vienna on April 18, 1921, he fled Austria in 1938 and came to America, fully intending to ultimately head to Israel. However, Vogel quickly fell for New York. He enrolled in The New School and eventually developed a curiosity for alternative cinema. He wanted to see political, experiment and documentary films, but they weren’t available on New York City movie screens. Moved by the work of Maya Deren, Amos Vogel and his wife Marcia, a key co-conspirator, formed Cinema 16. They planned early programs at the small Provincetown Playhouse downtown because Deren had screened her own work there. The two ran the organization together through the early 1960s, working closely with Jack Goelman.

A pioneer of presenting what would eventually be called “independent film,” Amos Vogel embraced non-mainstream cinema. 16mm documentary, educational, scientific and experimental films were eventually screened for thousands of people weekly at venues in New York City as Cinema 16 outgrew the Playhouse.

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From dGenerate Films: Cinema Scope Magazine Honors Chinese Filmmakers

To celebrate its 50th issue, Cinema Scope has compiled a list of fifty directors under 50 who represent “the future of cinema.” Much to the pride and delight of all those who champion Chinese voices in contemporary cinema, Cinema Scope has chosen to honor several significant Chinese filmmakers: Liu Jiayin, director of Oxhide and Oxhide IIZhao Liang, director of Petition and Crime and PunishmentPema Tseden the Tibetan director of Old DogJia Zhangke, director of such films as Unknown Pleasures and The World, as well as the 2008 documentary Dong, and Wang Bing, director of Coal Money and Man With No Name.

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