The annual screenings in Paris from the Pordenone Silent Film Festival kick off on November 1st at the Fondation Jérôme Seydoux-Pathé with an amplified choice of titles from the festival’s 42nd edition.

Once again the prestigious Fondation Jérôme Seydoux-Pathé in Paris will present a selection of titles from the most recent edition of the Pordenone Silent Film Festival, just weeks after the successful conclusion of the 42nd edition. Long considered a fundamental point of reference in the field of preservation and safeguarding silent film heritage, the Fondation first partnered with the Giornate in 2018, in recognition of the festival’s prime place for the global silent film community. This year’s Paris program is larger than ever, comprising 14 titles, all repeated and with live music, screening over the course of three weeks, from November 1st to 21st. Festival director Jay Weissberg, who curated the selection in collaboration with the Fondation, will be introducing the films in the first week.

The wide range of genres and key filmmakers presented in Pordenone are similarly reflected in the Paris series, demonstrating how rich and varied cinema was in the first decades of its history while also calling attention to the magnificent work of the world’s archives. Harry Piel, the daredevil German director, screenwriter, producer and actor whose unjustly neglected work received an ample retrospective this year,  is represented with four of the eight titles shown in Pordenone in October. There’s also space for two features from the second part of the retrospective devoted to mythical Balkan kingdoms, generically called Ruritania, in which love stories and power struggles play out against a background of adventure. Not to be missed are two canonical masterpieces, Louis Feuillade’s Vendemiaire (1918) and William Wyler’s Hell’s Heroes (1929), along with William de Mille’s superb drama, much appreciated in Pordenone, Conrad in Quest of His Youth (1920), recently restored by the Library of Congress. In addition, Universal’s first “Super Western” starring Harry Carey, the long presumed lost The Fox (1921), will be shown thanks to the Czech National Archive, who also have loaned the wild Circe the Enchantress (1924) with diva Mae Murray at the height of her success. This year’s Origins of Slapstick series is represented by Rêves de clowns (1924), the only feature film by the enormously influential clown trio, the Fratellini brothers, and a taste of the Early Cinema program is offered through a collection of British shorts made between 1897 and 1909 housed in the Filmoteca de Catalunya in Barcelona. There’s also a tribute to French writer Pierre Loti on the centenary of his death, with a selection of shorts curated by the EYE Filmmuseum in Amsterdam that reflect his tastes, the places and environments he loved and frequented, and the great influence he had on his era.