Home Movie Day at The Nick

USC Libraries’ Moving Image Research Collections (MIRC) and Nickelodeon Theatre are teaming up to host Columbia’s National Home Movie Day 2013 event. From 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. October 19, members of the community are invited to attend the free, family-friendly screening at the Nickelodeon, located downtown at 1607 Main Street. Refreshments will be available and prizes will be awarded.

National Home Movie Day is a worldwide celebration of amateur films and filmmaking, held annually in October. The event provides an opportunity for attendees to bring in their own movies for inspection, learn how to care for films and videotapes, discuss how home movies capture history, and actually see films and videos from their local community.

“Home movies have immense cultural and historic value. This year we were very proud, for example, to see Scott Nixon’s amateur film The Augustas added to the National Film Registry,” said Heather Heckman, Interim Director at MIRC. “Even footage that seems mundane when it is originally made — like vacation or holiday films — becomes fascinating with the passage of time.

Their appeal goes beyond just historic value; they are fun, as well.

“Home movies can be utterly charming,” Heckman said. “Who doesn’t enjoy kittens, puppies and kids?”

And it seems only natural to be hosting this year’s event with Nickelodeon.

“We’ve had a number of partnerships with MIRC over the years, and they produce something for our Indie Grits event every year,” said Andy Smith, Nickelodeon’s Executive Director. “It’s always a real treat to work with them.

“With Home Movie Day being a national event, it is fun to bring the celebration to Columbia audiences,” he said. “It’s a free event, so the people who participate will be a real mix. Certainly you’ll have families that bring in their material that they want to watch together, but you’ll also get general film lovers. There aren’t too many events that can bring together lots of different people.”

During Columbia’s Home Movie Day, films from the MIRC collections will play from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m., and attendees are welcome to join the festivities at any point. An official juried program of films submitted by community members will begin at 12:15 p.m. Door prizes for attendees will be drawn during a brief intermission after the program, and juror and audience awards will be announced at 1:45 p.m. The grand prize-winning movie will be preserved at MIRC and screened in its entirety at next year’s event.

MIRC staff will be on hand throughout the day to inspect attendee films and discuss home movie preservation. Film cameras, projectors and equipment will also be on display. Visitors are encouraged to bring in items for inspection, but anyone wishing to have their movie presented in the program must submit it to MIRC no later than Friday, October 4. Accepted formats are limited to 16mm film and VHS tapes.

The first ten participants to submit will see their home movies on the big screen on October 19th, and will receive one free DVD transfer of their film or video. For longer submissions, MIRC staff may select brief clips for public screening. This year, MIRC also will be accepting up to ten digital submissions until the October 4 deadline. Maximum run time for digital videos is three minutes.

Email MIRC at MIRC@mailbox.sc.edu for more information about electronic submissions.

For more information about Home Movie Day in Columbia, contact Lydia Pappas, MIRC Assistant Director, at pappasl@mailbox.sc.edu or 803-777-3791.

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