Front cover image for Black films collection, 1939-1984 (bulk 1967-1984)

Black films collection, 1939-1984 (bulk 1967-1984)

The Black Films Collection primarily documents the marketing of African Americans in American motion pictures and consists of scripts, press sheets, press kits, movie stills and posters. Much of the collection consists of press sheets, press books and press kits - material generated by film studios and distributors to market movies to theaters. The kits usually include: a synopsis of the film (not for publication), articles and ads for local newspapers, biographies of the performers, photographic stills for display, lobby cards and promotional materials. The film careers of Sidney Poitier, Dorothy Dandridge, Harry Belafonte, Pam Grier, Brock Peters and Jim Brown are well portrayed. Production companies represented in the Black Films Collection include: Warner Bros., Avco Embassy Pictures Corp., United Artists, American International Pictures, Columbia Pictures, Paramount, New World Pictures, National General, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, New Line Cinema and Twentieth Century-Fox. The scope of the collection extends from the first African American talkie "Hallelujah" to stills from movies of the early 1980's. A few of the many films for which there is information include "Birth of a Nation," "Coffy," "Cotton Comes to Harlem," "The Great White Hope," "Superfly," and "To Kill a Mockingbird." There are twenty-eight scripts whose titles include: "Black Samson," "I Passed for White," "The Jesse Owens Story," "The Klansman," and "Roots."
Archival Material, English, 1939