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The Right Footage

‘I Am Not Your Negro,’ Archive Footage and Race in America


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A historical documentary with contemporary echoes

I Am Not Your Negro was conceived after Gloria Karefa-Smart (born Gloria Esther Baldwin) had handed a letter over to Haitian filmmaker Raoul Peck. The letter from her brother, famous African-American writer James Baldwin, to his literary agent spoke of the manuscript he was working on entitled Remember This House. The text aimed to shed light on the Civil Rights era, one of the greatest struggles in American history and focused on three of its leaders and friends of Baldwin: Medgar Evers, Martin Luther King Jr., and Malcolm X. The thirty-page memoir remained unfinished as Baldwin passed away on December 1987.  (more…)

Archive Researchers

Featuring: Matthew Sanger, London


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You have been an archive researcher for many projects since the late 90s. How did you become an archive researcher, and what has been your favorite project so far?

I became an archive researcher quite by accident – I was working with a production company in 1996 logging rushes for a BBC series about the Prohibition era and the director/producer asked if I could also source, log and license the stills for the series. After that I worked as a stills researcher on a few other productions and also ventured into researching archive footage. I have always been a film buff so it seemed a natural vocation rather than an accidental career move. It’s difficult to give a favorite project as I’ve worked on so many – so here’s a few of the most memorable – working on three series of the cult Channel 4 series –Eurotrash was fun and an eye-opener, Jonathan Ross’ BBC3 series – Japanorama about Japanese popular culture was fascinating.  (more…)