February 25, 2011 — Coral Gables — The School of Communication dedicated the Norton Herrick Center for Motion Picture Studies on February 23, officially launching an initiative that promises to boost the school’s standing as one of the top film study programs in academia.
With a collection of famous films and television programs that includes rare video-formatted versions of early silent films of Charlie Chaplin, Buster Keaton, and other Hollywood stars, the Herrick Center will be a resource for motion picture research, aid the study and teaching of film at UM, and enrich the intellectual and cultural life of the University and South Florida region through lectures, conferences, seminars and workshops, and screenings at the Bill Cosford Cinema.
The center is named in honor of Norton Herrick, chairman of Herrick Entertainment, a motion picture and theatrical production and financing company. Last year Herrick, a recipient of the UM President’s Medal, donated to the School of Communication a collection of films and television programs appraised at $32 million.
During its first year, the Herrick Center, led by director Christina Lane, associate professor in the school’s Motion Picture Program, will work with NuRay Media to inventory and digitize the collection of more than 3,500 individual films and video tapes so that it can be screened with contemporary technology. Once the collection has been digitized, students and faculty will be able to use the titles for study and research. The Herrick Center director will focus on teaching, scholarship, and programming utilizing the collection.
“The Herrick Center and its collection will be a rich and varied resource for our motion picture students at both the undergraduate and graduate level,” said Dean Sam L Grogg. “The new center will galvanize the program’s ongoing commitment to understanding and preserving our cinematic history.”
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