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Collection Number: 20193

Collection Title: Florentine Films Archives, 1981-1997

This collection has access restrictions. For details, please see the restrictions.

This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held in the Wilson Library at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in our reading room, and not digitally available through the World Wide Web. See the section for more information.


expand/collapse Expand/collapse Collection Overview

Size About 4900 items (763.0 linear feet)
Abstract Archival records and original film footage of Florentine Films and Ken Burns, documentary filmmaker, director, producer, and cinematographer. On some projects, Burns worked with Amy Stechler Burns, Stephen Ives, and others. Projects documented include: Brooklyn Bridge (1981), The Shakers (1984), Huey Long (1985), The Statue of Liberty (1985), Thomas Hart Benton (1988), The Congress (1988), The Civil War (1990), Empire of the Air (1991), Baseball (1994), Thomas Jefferson (1996), The West (1996), and Lewis & Clark (1997).
Creator Florentine Films.
Language English.
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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Information For Users

Restrictions to Access
Much of the collection is unprocessed and requires staff assistance or creation of viewing copies prior to use. Potential researchers should contact Southern Historical Collection Research and Instructional Services staff in advance of their anticipated use of the collection.
This collection contains additional materials that are not processed and are currently not available to researchers. For information about access to these materials, contact Research and Instructional Services staff. Please be advised that preparing unprocessed materials for access can be a lengthy process.
Copyright Notice
Copyright is retained by the authors of items in these papers, or their descendants, as stipulated by United States copyright law.
Provenance
Received from Kenneth L. Burns of Walpole, N.H., in 1991, with an addition in November 1994. Received from Florentine Films in March 1998 (Acc. 98050), March 2000 (Acc. 98590), and January 2001 (Acc. 98821).
Sensitive Materials Statement
Manuscript collections and archival records may contain materials with sensitive or confidential information that is protected under federal or state right to privacy laws and regulations, the North Carolina Public Records Act (N.C.G.S. § 132 1 et seq.), and Article 7 of the North Carolina State Personnel Act (Privacy of State Employee Personnel Records, N.C.G.S. § 126-22 et seq.). Researchers are advised that the disclosure of certain information pertaining to identifiable living individuals represented in this collection without the consent of those individuals may have legal ramifications (e.g., a cause of action under common law for invasion of privacy may arise if facts concerning an individual's private life are published that would be deemed highly offensive to a reasonable person) for which the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill assumes no responsibility.
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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Subject Headings

The following terms from Library of Congress Subject Headings suggest topics, persons, geography, etc. interspersed through the entire collection; the terms do not usually represent discrete and easily identifiable portions of the collection--such as folders or items.

Clicking on a subject heading below will take you into the University Library's online catalog.

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Biographical Information

Florentine Films was founded in 1976 by Ken Burns, Roger Sherman, Buddy Squires, and Larry Hott, who work independently under the Florentine Films name. Florentine Films often works in cooperation with other organizations to produce films on various subjects.

Ken Burns is a documentary filmmaker, director, producer, and cinematographer. He was born in Brooklyn, N.Y., in 1953 and graduated from Hampshire College in Amherst, Mass., in 1975. In 1981, he produced and directed the Academy Award nominated Brooklyn Bridge . He then made several other award-winning films, including The Shakers: Hands to Work, Hearts to God; The Statue of Liberty , also nominated for an Oscar; Huey Long , the story of the turbulent Southern dictator; The Congress: The History and Promise of Representative Government ; Thomas Hart Benton , a portrait of the regionalist artist; and Empire of the Air: The Men Who Made Radio . Burns also produced and directed two films, William Segal and Vezelay, which explore the question of search and individual identity through the work and teachings of philosopher and painter William Segal.

Ken Burns was also the director, producer, co-writer, chief cinematographer, music director and executive producer of the television series The Civil War, which was the highest rated series in the history of American Public Television, attracting an audience of 40 million during its premiere in September 1990. He was the director, producer, co-writer, chief cinematographer, music director and executive producer of the Public Television series Baseball (1994), which was then the most watched series in PBS history, attracting more than 45 million viewers. In the fall of 1996, The West was released, followed by Lewis and Clark: The Journey of the Corps of Discovery (1997); Frank Lloyd Wright , co-directed and produced with his longtime collaborator Lynn Novick (1998); Not For Ourselves Alone: The Story of Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony (1999), co-produced with Paul Barnes; and Jazz (2001).

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Scope and Content

Archival records and original film footage of Florentine Films and Ken Burns, documentary filmmaker, director, producer, and cinematographer. On some projects, Burns worked with Amy Stechler Burns, Stephen Ives, and others. Projects documented include: Brooklyn Bridge (1981), The Shakers (1984), Huey Long (1985), The Statue of Liberty (1985), Thomas Hart Benton (1988), The Congress (1988), The Civil War (1990), Empire of the Air (1991), Baseball (1994), Thomas Jefferson (1996), The West (1996), and Lewis & Clark (1997).

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Contents list

expand/collapse Expand/collapse Series Quick Links

expand/collapse Expand/collapse Series 1. Brooklyn Bridge, 1981.

Academy Award nominated history of the Brooklyn Bridge. Contains primarily correspondence and copies of grants.

Box 1-2

Brooklyn Bridge #20193, Series: "1. Brooklyn Bridge, 1981." Box 1-2

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Series 2. The Shakers: Hands to Work, Hearts to God, 1984.

Multiple award winning hour-long history of the Shakers religious sect that has produced beautiful architecture and crafts. Contains minimal documentation; primarily transparencies pertaining to titles and credits.

Box 3

The Shakers #20193, Series: "2. The Shakers: Hands to Work, Hearts to God, 1984." Box 3

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Series 3. Huey Long, 1985.

A 90-minute award winning portrait of the turbulent life and times of Louisiana's colorful politician, Huey Long, known as the "Kingfish." Contains scripts, interview transcripts, and timing sheets.

Box 4

Huey Long #20193, Series: "3. Huey Long, 1985." Box 4

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Series 4. The Statue of Liberty, 1985.

An Academy Award nominated 60-minute history of the Statue of Liberty. Contains scripts, interview transcripts, and cue sheets.

Box 5-6

The Statue of Liberty #20193, Series: "4. The Statue of Liberty, 1985." Box 5-6

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Series 5. Thomas Hart Benton, 1988.

A 90-minute portrait of the life and work of Thomas Hart Benton, one of America's best and most controversial painters. Contains film logs and related notes.

Box 7-10

Thomas Hart Benton #20193, Series: "5. Thomas Hart Benton, 1988." Box 7-10

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Series 6. The Congress, 1988.

A 90-minute history of the United States Congress with two dozen interviews, rare archival footage, and movie clips. Contains scripts, filming schedules, and logs.

Box 11-14

The Congress #20193, Series: "6. The Congress, 1988." Box 11-14

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Series 7. The Civil War, 1990.

A nine-part, eleven-hour history of the American Civil War as told through the lives and experiences of the people who lived through it.

Box 15-22

The Civil War: Notebooks (logs) #20193, Series: "7. The Civil War, 1990." Box 15-22

Box 23-24

The Civil War: Cue sheets #20193, Series: "7. The Civil War, 1990." Box 23-24

Box 25

The Civil War: Titles #20193, Series: "7. The Civil War, 1990." Box 25

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Series 8. Empire of the Air: The Men Who Made Radio, 1991.

A two-hour history of the people who made radio. Contains scripts, interview transcripts, and logs.

Box 26-30

Empire of the Air #20193, Series: "8. Empire of the Air: The Men Who Made Radio, 1991." Box 26-30

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Series 9. Baseball, 1994.

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Series 10. Thomas Jefferson: A Film by Ken Burns, 1996.

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Series 11. The West, 1996.

A nine-part series on the American West.

Box 75-76

The West: Interview transcripts and bin printouts #20193, Series: "11. The West, 1996." Box 75-76

Box 77

The West: Edit decision list; clearance rights; master quotes (1) #20193, Series: "11. The West, 1996." Box 77

Box 78

The West: Mater quotes (2); scratch quotes; consultants' responses; interview bins by person; episode 5 EDLs; episode 6 EDLs #20193, Series: "11. The West, 1996." Box 78

Box 79

The West: List of western collections; source materials (books, photocopies of books and articles); banner #20193, Series: "11. The West, 1996." Box 79

Box 80

The West: Shot log; episode 4 clip in cut; maps #20193, Series: "11. The West, 1996." Box 80

Box 81

The West: Archival selex; archival logging sheets; camera and sound roll logs; video logs #20193, Series: "11. The West, 1996." Box 81

Box 82

The West: Original camera rolls; original camera rolls timing sheets; archives and scenics by tape number; camera log; select reel log; scenics by camera roll; delivery deadlines and specs; the Dayton Duncan memos #20193, Series: "11. The West, 1996." Box 82

Box 83

The West: Negative cutting; book persmissions; appearance releases; location releases; final music cue sheets; features; features log; features bins #20193, Series: "11. The West, 1996." Box 83

Box 84

The West: Subject reports; state reports; finish notes; music log; music for scratch session; sound fx pages; NEH (1) #20193, Series: "11. The West, 1996." Box 84

Box 85

The West: NEH (2) #20193, Series: "11. The West, 1996." Box 85

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Series 12. Lewis & Clark: The Journey of the Corps of Discovery, 1997.

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Processing Information

This finding aid describes the administrative records of Florentine Films by project. A complete inventory to the archival film footage is not available. The original film shipping lists are available for some projects. Please consult with reference staff.

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