Library of Congress Announces Films Added to National Film Registry; Includes THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK and AIRPLANE!

     December 28, 2010

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Every year, the United States National Film Preservation Board chooses a selection of films for preservation in the National Film Registry. Up to 25 films that are deemed “culturally, historically or aesthetically significant” are chosen, and said films are then preserved and stored in the Library of Congress.  The list of films that were chosen this year include The Empire Strikes Back, Airplane!, All the President’s Men, The Exorcist, Malcolm X and much, much more.

Not surprisingly, a dominant number of films from the 1970’s were selected. Often hailed as one of the most prolific and significant decades in film history, the 1970’s are ripe with films that are today treasured as classics. Films from directors such as Robert Altman, John Huston, Black Edwards, George Lucas, Spike Lee and Elia Kazan were chosen for the registry this year. Films selected do not have to be feature length (Lucas’ student short film Electronic Labyrinth: THX 1138 4EB was also selected this year), and must meet no criteria other than being significant to American culture. Hit the jump for more, as well as to check out the full list of films that the National Film Preservation Board selected.

Other works selected include Edwards’ The Pink Panther (no, not the one with Beyoncé), W.C. Fields’ It’s a Gift, and the John Travolta-laden Saturday Night Fever. Librarian of Congress James H. Billington had this to say:

“As the nation’s repository of American creativity, the Library of Congress — with the support of Congress — must ensure the preservation of America’s film patrimony The National Film Registry is a reminder to the nation that the preservation of our cinematic creativity must be a priority because about half of the films produced before 1950 and as much as 90% of those made before 1920 have been lost to future generations.”

Here’s the complete list of films selected for 2010:

Airplane! (1980)

All the President’s Men (1976)

The Bargain (1914)All-The-Presidents-Men-movie-poster

Cry of Jazz (1959)

Electronic Labyrinth: THX 1138 4EB (1967)

The Empire Strikes Back (1980)

The Exorcist (1973)

The Front Page (1931)

Grey Gardens (1976)

I Am Joaquin (1969)

It’s a Gift (1934)

Let There Be Light (1946)

Lonesome (1928)

Make Way for Tomorrow (1937)

Malcolm X (1992)

McCabe and Mrs. Miller (1971)

Newark Athlete (1891)

Our Lady of the Sphere (1969)

The Pink Panther (1964)

Preservation of the Sign Language (1913)

Saturday Night Fever (1977)

Study of a River (1996)

Tarantella (1940)

A Tree Grows in Brooklyn (1945)

A Trip Down Market Street (1906)

Check out a list of past films selected by the National Film Registry here.

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