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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.