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The 16 mm reel finds its way into First Fridays

KNOXVILLE -- Who would have thought the 16 mm reel would worm its way into modern day entertainment? Beginning First Friday on March 2, 2012, the reel will click along as it presents Cinema Down Under: Hollywood's Perception of the South.

Presented by The Tennessee Archive of Moving Image and Sound,, East Tennessee Historical Society,, and the Knox County Public Library's McClung Historical Collection,, are partnering to present a free monthly film series on First Fridays displaying the rare, and often unique, local moving images collected and preserved at the East Tennessee History Center.

Also featured in the series will be a variety of art exhibitions by local East Tennessee artists Amy Campbell, Diana Rogers, and Laramie Payne.

All programs are held at the East Tennessee History Center, 601 S. Gay Street, and are free to the public.

March 2 from 7-9 p.m:
Cinema Down Yonder: Hollywood's Perception of the South
Sometimes Hollywood got things right, but on more than a few occasions the results could be somewhat questionable. From The Vaults takes a look at stereotypical images of Southern culture as depicted by Hollywood.

The first of the series features these films:

Southern Exposure (Hal Roach, 1935)
Vintage comedy short featuring forgotten comedian Charley Chase. Chase portrays a big city lawyer summoned back home to the hills of Kentucky to defend his wayward pappy, accused in a breach of promise lawsuit.

Lolly Madonna War (MGM, 1973)
A modern-day Hatfield and McCoy feud saga filmed in Maynardville, Tennessee during the summer of 1972. This long-unavailable feature film, based on a novel by Sue Grafton, features Rod Steiger, Robert Ryan, Jeff Bridges, and a host of Union County residents and locations in the production. This obscure, sometimes-violent, but always interesting, 1973 release depicts the tension between two neighboring families that gradually accumulates over time, eventually developing into all-out warfare between the two clans. Note: Parental Discretion is advised.

April 6, 2012 from 6-9 pm:
"I Open My Mouth and Let 'er Fly": The Pappy 'Gube' Beaver Story
The world premier of a documentary produced by indie filmmakers Dwight Swanson and Robert Salyer features the story behind the life and times of long-time Knoxville preacher Parlan "Pappy Gube" Beaver. Beaver, now 92 years old, formerly worked with grocer and country music impresario Cas Walker, and has been on local radio airwaves for over 70 years. Chet Atkins' first commercial recordings were made with Beaver for Capitol Records during the late 1940s.

Live Music: Join Americana music roots musicians Wade Hill and the legendary Hogman for a program of live ole-time music and vintage film clips celebrating the life and career of East Tennessee's own Pappy "Gube" Beaver!

About the artist: Maryville-based artist Amy Campbell's exhibit "Music & Culture, East, Tennessee folk portraits" portrays in a simple and direct style her love and respect of present and historic folks of our region. Portraits include Chet Adkins, Pappy "Gube' Beaver, The Reverend and Mrs. J. Bazzel Mull, Wade Hill, Cas Walker and many more. For more information about her art, please visit:

May 4, 2012 from 7 - 9 pm:
Silents, Please!
An evening devoted to the lost art of the silent film, featuring vintage short subjects, a rare example of Knoxville-native Clarence Brown's early work. And in true silent cinema fashion, pianist Steve Radford will accompany the film with an original score. Introduction by historian Jack Neely

The Goose Woman (Universal, 1925), Director: Clarence Brown
Acclaimed by critics and silent film historians as one of Clarence Brown's early and artistic achievements, The Goose Woman depicts Louise Dresser as a famous opera singer who loses her voice when her son is born, so she drowns her sorrows in drink. Murderous complications involving her son ensue! Original motion picture print of The Goose Woman provided by the Niles Essanay Film Museum.

Short: Dizzy Daisy (Educational, 1926) – rare silent comedy featuring Louise Fazenda; The Thieving Hand (1911); and Comicalamities (1928), featuring Felix the Cat

June 1, 2012 from 6 - 9 pm
Mary from Knoxville
From The Vaults celebrates the career of Knoxville's own opera diva (and Sleeping Beauty), Mary Costa, with a screening of the forgotten and rarely screened film noir epic The Big Caper (United Artists, 1957). This late-in the-game noir crime classic features Costa as a gangster's moll, joining forces with leading hunk Rory Calhoun. Along with a quirky cast of characters, they get together to pull off the ultimate burglary!

Short Subject: Mary Costa on Television, 1959-1972: Clips from various televised variety shows Also featured in this program are vintage television clips from Costa's appearances with the likes of Bing Crosby, Frank Sinatra, Don Knotts, and other show-biz notables.

Art Exhibit: Diana Rogers, Knoxville artist
A graduate of Mars Hill College in North Carolina with a B.A. in Studio Art and English, Rogers operates a shop on Etsy, Howl With Me , where she sells small prints, paper goods and the occasional piece of original art. Rogers's work utilizes constant visual stimulation; a search for images that she responds to, aesthetically and emotionally, in turn, inspiring her creations. The natural world, popular culture, personal nostalgia, fairy tales and folklore, her dog, garden, various historical events and the random thoughts rumbling around inside her head all serve as sources of inspiration.

August 3, 2012 from 6-9 pm:
Heartland Series: Footage from the McClung-WBIR-TV Vaults
Our Southern Mountaineers / In Moonshine Country ( Paramount-Bray, 1917-1918)
Book signing and introduction by Bill Landry
Bill Landry will be available to answer questions and autograph his new book Appalachian Tales & Heartland Adventures

Heartland Series host Bill Landry introduces a program of archival footage from the WBIR-TV / McClung Historical Collection's Heartland Series Collection, featuring never-before seen outtakes, interviews, and raw footage from the classic 1989 episode The Rolling Store. Join Bill and the Heartland crew as they capture and document the last of a breed - a grocery store on wheels, travelling throughout the upper-East Tennessee region, dispensing groceries to customers located high within the mountainous areas of East Tennessee.

Featured in the program will be rare and recently preserved 28mm film newsreel footage from the McClung Historical Collection depicting authentic moving images of rural mountain life, and mountaineers, dating from 1917. These images are perhaps the earliest known moving images of the Appalachian people discovered to date.

September 7, 2012 from 7- 9 pm:
Hootenanny! Comes to Knoxville (ABC-TV, 1964)
Live Performance by the original Cumberland Trio

Right before the dawn of the Beatles rock revolution, folk music was in. The nationally televised ABC-TV Program Hootenanny captured this youth movement, and was filmed at various college campuses throughout the United States. ABC-TV came to the University of Tennessee's Knoxville campus in late 1963, capturing on film rare Americana-style performances by Doc Watson, the Carter family, Homer and Jethro, Eddy Arnold, and local Knoxville coffee shop heroes, The Cumberland Trio. The Trio will reunite before the screening.

October 5, 2012 from 6-9 pm:
The Lost Films of Walther Barth, 1927-1940
The Dr. Walther Barth Collection of 16mm home movies feature some of the most unusual and interesting footage found at the Tennessee Archive of Moving Image and Sound. Barth, a German native, began making 16mm home movies in 1927, capturing life in Germany and Europe before the rise of the Nazi regime.

Excerpts screened will include haunting fragments of home life in German villages and cities, swinging Berlin during the 1920s, a secretly-filmed 1930 Nazi march, intriguing and beautiful photographic studies of Dr. Barth's girlfriends, the only known 1930s-era color footage of the environmentally disastrous Ducktown, Tennessee copper plants, rare 1930s aerial views of downtown Knoxville, and a 1934 trip to Gatlinburg, Tennessee.

Art Exhibit: " The Primal Eye",, Laramie Payne, Knoxville artist
Knoxville-based artist Laramie Payne's exhibit "The Primal Eye" perfectly reflects, and accentuates, the sometimes-dark mysterious mood and atmosphere of the Barth footage. Her stark black and white drawings focus on vision, memory, and the original lens, the primal eye of the imagination where all images internal and external take shape. Payne explores how individual vision can shape the ordinary into something at once both familiar and unknown, chilling and moving.

Published February 25, 2012

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