By Cody Nix
From the classroom to the silver screen, RSU’s Fine Arts Film Series brings innovative and controversial films to the Claremore campus.
“The series is designed to show critically significant and historic films that students probably haven’t had an opportunity to see on the big screen,” says Dr. Hugh Foley.
Foley, a Fine Arts Department professor and member of the film committee, says the series is designed to showcase important American films, as well as international films.
“We want to show international films so we can provide students an opportunity to learn about other parts of the world that may have some important value, but the students normally wouldn’t chase down on their own.”
In regards to the future, Foley says that the committee members know what kinds of films they want that will intrigue the minds of students.
“We kind of know what we’re going to be showing the rest of the year. We have a movie called the Battle for Algiers which we’re trying to get a hold of, which is a early 1960s French documentary, and we want to show the film Winter’s Bone.”
Foley believes the Bollywood genre would be a good way to end the year. Bollywood films are produced in India.
“I think Bollywood films have a good mass appeal, and they are very interesting for a lot of different reasons, and so I’m hoping we’re going to close out the year with a very significant Bollywood film of the last five years called Om Shanti Om.”
Foley says the event is not only important in educating students in film and the issues they discuss, but creating a more active campus.
“It’s a key part of the whole series, getting students out of the dorms or local apartment, coming to campus for a cultural activity and intellectual activity.”
In the past few years since its inception, Foley is proud the film series has showcased many different films from across genres, eras and countries.
“We’ve shown things like Leaves of Grass, Bollywood films like My Name is Khan, we’ve shown classic American cinema like The Shining, Italian Neo-Realism in Bicycle Thieves, and we also had a Women’s film festival called Lunafest.”
Even in more recent showings, Foley says the Fine Arts Film Series has showcased modern and mainstream films, as well.
“We’ve also shown Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, something that was a contemporary pop culture film, but had a lot of advances in cinema graphics, so it’s been a really wide range of films.”
Foley says part of the appeal of Bollywood films is both quality and price.
“They’re fairly inexpensive to show, as compared to American films, so we can get a couple of those in without paying the same amount that we have to pay for an American film. “
Foley says it can be tough to acquire the rights to good films, and the requirements change depending on the film.
“In order to show a film on campus, what you are supposed to do it go through a film distributor that specifically licenses places like college campuses. There are different prices and there are different categories of films.”
From mainstream films to cult classics and international films, Foley says the prices can vary, which must be taken into consideration with their budget. While Bollywood films can cost as little as $75, a classic film like The Shining may cost hundreds, and new feature films could cost about $1,000.
The next film scheduled for November 17 at 7 p.m., is The Wayman Tisdale Story about three-time University of Oklahoma All-American basketball star Wayman Tisdale, who also played a dozen years in the NBA and was a professional jazz musician before his joyful life was cut short by cancer.