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Browsing Foward

REDISCOVERING AFRICAN-AMERICAN FILMS

Scene from The Blood of Jesus

A still image from The Blood of Jesus, G. William Jones Film and Video Collection, Hamon Arts Library

The Blood of Jesus, a 1941 African- American salvation drama that is part of the G. William Jones Film and Video Collection at Hamon Arts Library, is included in The Pioneers of African-American Cinema, a landmark collection of DVDs paying tribute to early movies made by and for African Americans. The deluxe five-disc set produced by Kino Lorber is a flagship project of the Film Preservation and Restoration Initiative launched by Kickstarter, a global crowdfunding platform. The team behind the project includes curators Jacqueline Stewart and Charles Musser, executive producer Paul D. Miller, a.k.a. DJ Spooky, and producer Bret Wood. The collection is scheduled for release in late June and will be accompanied by an 80-page booklet of essays and notes. The Film Forum in New York City hosted special screenings in February and March of The Blood of Jesus and other films, which have been newly mastered in high definition. Films also will be shown in Seattle, Los Angeles and Washington, D.C. Shot in Texas on a shoestring budget, The Blood of Jesus was the first feature by writer-director Spencer Williams, later a star of TV’s Amos ’n’ Andy. The movie was named by the Library of Congress to the National Film Registry in 1991.