A remarkable collection of 75 early American films, including a silent movie by “Grapes of Wrath” director John Ford, have been found in a New Zealand archive, according to the Guardian.
Titled “Upstream”, the John Ford film had long-been considered lost to Hollywood and is said to be the crown jewel in the find.
Discovered by a Los Angeles-based film preservationist, the 75 American pics largely derive from the 1910s and 1920s and include a short comedy directed by Mabel Normand as well as silent pics by female actors Clara Bow and Mabel Normand.
A deal with the National Film Preservation Fund has been struck to restore the films in San Francisco.
“This is a wonderful group of movies,” NFPF director Annette Melville tells the Guardian. “About 70% of them are complete, which is extraordinary in itself, and many have their original colour tints.”
As for Ford, the Oscar-winning filmmaker is known to have made over 60 silent films between the years of 1917 and 1928 but only 10 are known to exist in complete form.
(Photos: Top: director John Ford. Below: A scene from “Why Husbands Flirt” (1918), one of some 75 silent movies, found in the archive)