My Secret, Fiendish Plans for 2018

Welcome to my hidden mountain lair, full of trapdoors and all the shark tanks OSHA would allow. (So, none, basically.) And now, Mr. Bond, before I kill you, I will reveal all my fiendish plans, which you shall be unable to stop.

More Variety, More Underrepresented Countries and Cinemas

I had a ton of fun exploring Latin American silents, the work of black filmmakers and generally poking around more obscure corners in 2017. I hope to up my game this year with more refills on these topics, along with coverage of Central Europe’s film industry for countries whose names don’t start with a G and end with -ermany. (Nothing against German film, of course, and it’s not banned or anything. I just think it gets plenty of coverage already.)

I also finally got my ducks in a row for covering some more cinema from the Jewish diaspora, including some Yiddish titles. Huzzah!

More Animation

I have received many requests over the years to dive a bit more deeply into silent animation. I plan to do so in 2018 and do you one better: I’ll also be covering modern indie animation that uses the grammar of silent films. And I will have special focus on the women of animation, both vintage and modern.

More Cooking

I want to step up my cooking game this year. My recipe posts seem to be well-received and my goal is to improve them. Truth be told, I am usually so tired of the recipe by the time I am ready to take pictures that my photography is not really the best. So I need to (gulp) build up my food photography skills and exercise a bit of patience. We shall see how it goes.

I also will be purchasing some props for the photos, pretty dishes and flatware, as well as table linens. Nothing extravagant, just whatever catches my fancy at World Market or Home Goods or eBay or the thrift store. I picked up some old-fashioned champagne glasses for a song recently and can’t wait to use them for a pudding or jelly. (Or, you know, champagne. Brut Nature for me, please and thank you.) I also won a lavish haul of vintage aluminum jelly molds on eBay, so look for more wiggly desserts (and, gulp, not desserts) in the near future.

More DVDs?

I have had several people ask if I will be releasing another DVD on the heels of my Kidnapped Kickstarter. I love the enthusiasm and appreciate the support but this is my very first go-round and I am still learning. I am going to wait until my discs are delivered to backers (we’re looking at March for that and are on schedule) before I make a decision about a follow-up.

That being said, I have been poking around in archive corners and have several potential successors in mind. The great thing is that there is no shortage of public domain silents that need championing. Archives are filled to the gills with worthy movies that lack big stars and buzz but absolutely deserve to be made available to the public.

I am also refining my marketing skills and trying to find more ways to make these projects even more exciting and rewarding to backers. (For Kidnapped, I printed up real tickets to an imaginary 1917 screening and every backer will receive one as an additional souvenir.) Finally, I am planning to sell copies of the DVD on Amazon, so anybody who missed donating will be able to purchase the film at a later date.

…where did Mr. Bond go?

He escaped?


But he knows all my plans! Oh, fiddlesticks! This Villainy 101 book is worthless.


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  1. Shari Polikoff

    The paper cutouts of ‘Adventures of Prince Achmed’ are mind-blowing, aren’t they? And I love Yiddish films…the acting is so expressive you almost don’t need titles and translations.
    Can you get some of the film treasures that are being restored at the AFI’s Packard Campus in Virginia?

    1. Fritzi Kramer

      With archival holdings, it’s all a matter of access restrictions from the original donors. For example, I believe the AFI’s Paramount collection is pretty difficult to license for a small organization like mine. (By small I mean me and my cat.)

  2. Kerr Lockhart

    When you continue with DVDs of your own, I think you should make “A Night At The Movies” your hallmark. No one else is doing it right now. (Warner is only doing vintage releases in Archive it seems.) And it puts unknown films into context. It’s really the main reason I supported your project.

  3. Ross

    Yes please, animation. After all, it was your espousal of Tom Stathes “Cartoon Roots’ that set me and maybe others onto that particular path.

  4. Gene Smiley

    I’m on board for more DVD releases! Also glad to see broadening of nations, and of Yiddish films – I’m sure you know of NCJ at Brandies University, but I’ll put a plug in just the same.

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