From the network: Before the days of TV news, many Americans had their views of the world shaped by newsreels that preceded feature presentations at local movie theaters. This September, Turner Classic Movies (TCM) will celebrate the 75th anniversary of the groundbreaking journalism series The March of Time. TCM will present four hours of classic newsreels Sunday, Sept. 5, beginning at 8 p.m. (ET). TCM’s presentation is part of a major, multi-platform initiative involving HBO Archives and The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA).
TCM’s newsreel presentations will include “Inside Nazi Germany,” the single-most crucial and controversial of the films. “Inside Nazi Germany” was created in 1937, when The March of Time hired a cinematographer with a hidden camera to shoot in Berlin. The film introduced Adolf Hitler to a then-fiercely isolationist America. David O. Selznick praised “Inside Nazi Germany” as “one of the greatest and most important reels in the history of pictures.” Radio City Music Hall ran the film for a record 16 weeks.
Other titles airing on TCM as part of the network’s marathon include “Dogs for Sale,” “Dust Bowl,” “Poland and War,” “Show Business at War,” “Youth in Crisis,” “Palestine Problem,” “American Beauty,” “Problem Drinkers” and “Mid-Century Half Way To Where?”
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“The March of Time is not only an important part of film history but also a series which made a vital contribution to both modern journalism and documentary filmmaking,” said TCM host Robert Osborne. “We're very excited at TCM to be able to bring this exciting and remarkable series to the forefront for the very first time since it's initial showings in theatres."
The award-winning series The March of Time was produced by Time magazine beginning in 1935. The series appeared in theaters nationwide through 1951 and covered a full spectrum of notable events in news, politics and sports. It then switched to television production, which continued through 1967. The March of Time is credited with the creation of documentary newsgathering through the use of reenactments. HBO Archives, which launched in 2002, has been managing and restoring The March of Time documentary programs since 2007.
On Sept. 1, MoMA in New York will launch The March of Time: 75th Anniversary, consisting of nine unique screening programs running through Sept. 10. MoMA’s opening night celebration will be a program of selected highlights, hosted by Osborne. Following the opening night screenings, Osborne will moderate a panel of experts, including Time, Inc. archivist Bill Hooper; Henry Luce biographer Alan Brinkley; Hollywood on the Hudson author Richard Koszarski; and 89-year-old March of Time cinematographer Major Norman Hatch.
A fan page has been established on Facebook to keep track of the 75th anniversary events and to offer a place for fans to talk about and view clips from the series at http://facebook.com/themarchoftime.
The following is the complete schedule for TCM’s celebration of The March of Time (all times Eastern):
8 p.m. “Dogs for Sale” (1937), “Dust Bowl” (1937) and “Poland and War” (1937)
8:30 p.m. “Inside Nazi Germany” (1938)
9 p.m. “Show Business at War” (1943)
9:30 p.m. “Youth in Crisis” (1943)
10 p.m. “Palestine Problem” (1945)
10:30 p.m. “American Beauty” (1945)
11 p.m. “Problem Drinkers” (1946)
11:30 p.m. “Mid-Century: Halfway to Where?” (1950)