Birds Eye View Present: Be Natural: The Untold Story of Alice Guy-Blaché
Alice Guy-Blaché was a prolific filmmaker and a cinematic pioneer, yet she has largely been erased from the history books. In this entertaining and enlightening documentary, Pamela B. Green goes on an eventful journey to discover the astonishing scope of Guy-Blaché’s career, and probe just why she has been forgotten.
In a remarkably short period of time in the early 1900s, Guy-Blaché rose from a secretary to running a leading film studio in her native France. She was one of the very first to make a narrative film, and pioneered the use of close ups, hand-tinted colour and synchronised sound. When she emigrated to the US she began all over again, setting up the prolific Solax Studios in New Jersey.
In her quest to unearth everything she can about Guy-Blaché’s remarkable life, Green interviews 90 filmmakers and historians, and criss-crosses the US, procuring a wealth or artifacts and anecdotes from Guy-Blaché’s descendants.
The screening on 18th January was followed by a panel discussion with freelance writer, critic and film historian Pamela Hutchinson, SilentLondon.co.uk, hosted by Mia Bays, Director-at-Large of Birds’ Eye View.
This event was part of the Reclaim The Frame project – a mission to bring ever-greater audiences to films by women to widen and enrich cinema’s perspective of the world, run by charity Birds’ Eye View, and backed by the British Film Institute’s Audience Fund. To join the #ReclaimTheFrame mission and receive free cinema tickets, discount codes and other film goodies go to Bit.ly/BEVRTF.