Festival guests

Robert Byrne

is a film restorer specialising in early cinema and films of the silent era. He holds a MA in Preservation of the Moving Image from the University of Amsterdam, is a graduate of the FIAF Film Restoration Summer School, and was the 2011 recipient of the Haghefilm Foundation Fellowship. To date, he has led the restoration work of more than twenty silent era feature films, and also a number of short films. In 2018 the publication of his restored BEHIND THE DOOR (1919) was recognized as a 2018 Best Single DVD Release at the II Cinema Ritrovato DVD Awards. He has regularly had articles published in the FIAF Journal of Film Preservation and AMIA’s The Moving Image periodical, and also in countless film festival catalogues. Byrne is President of the Board of Directors at the San Francisco Silent Film Festival. The San Francisco Silent Film Festival is a nonprofit organization dedicated to educating the public about silent film as an art form and as a culturally valuable historical record. Now in its 24th year, SFSFF produces events that showcase important titles from the silent era, often in restored or preserved prints, with live musical accompaniment by some of the world's finest practitioners of the art of putting music to film. 

photo  IUB

Serge Bromberg

is a populariser of silent movies and the founder of Lobster Films. Both a passionate and fascinating collector, ever since 1985 he has been on the front line for preserving, saving and broadcasting heritage-films of all forms. Furthering his desire to share his passion with the general audience, since 1992 he has hosted and played the piano for the unique cinema-concert show “Retour de Flamme” (“Saved from the Flames”) touring all over the world. He has built up a catalog of rights to over 150 feature films and a collection of world-famous old films.

For his contribution, he and Eric Lange were granted the Jean Mitry Award in 1997, and he was awarded the Knights Cross of the French “Arts et Lettres” distinction in 2002. For 14 years he was the artistic director of the Annecy International Animated Film Festival (from 1999). He also co-directed (with Ruxandra Medrea) the documentary “Henri-Georges Clouzot’s Inferno” (2009), for which he received a César Award.

photo Patrice Sterraz

Giovanna Fossati

is the Chief Curator of EYE Filmmuseum (Amsterdam), where she supervises a collection of 50,000 ti­tles. She is also a Professor of Film Heritage and Digital Film Culture at the University of Amsterdam, teaching on the Preservation and Presentation of the Moving Image MA programme since it was es­tablished in 2003. She is currently leading the research project “The Sensory Moving Image Archive (SEMIA) – Boosting Creative Reuse for Artistic Practice and Research”. Along with Eef Masson, she also coordinates the research group Moving Images: Preservation, Curation, Exhibition (ASCA). Fossati is the author of “From Grain to Pixel: The Archival Life of Film in Transition” (Amsterdam University Press, 2009 and 2018, revised edition), co-author with Tom Gunning, Joshua Yumibe and Jonathon Rosen of “Fantasia of Color in Early Cinema” (Amsterdam University Press, 2015), co-editor with Annie van den Oever of “Exposing the Film Apparatus. The Film Archive as a Research Laboratory” (Amsterdam University Press, 2016), and co-editor of the volume “The Colour Fantastic. Chromatic Worlds of Silent”.

photo Joost Bataille

Russell Merritt

teaches film history at the University of California, Berkeley. He has authored articles on D.W. Griffith, Sergei Eisenstein, animation, Sherlock Holmes, colour aesthetics, and early film. He produces and directs “The Great Nickelodeon Show”, a recreation of a turn-of-the-century nickelodeon programme. He also co-produced [with Robert Byrne] the restoration of “The Hound of the Baskervilles” [a collaboration between the Filmoteka Narodowa and the San Francisco Silent Film Festival] and of the historic “Sherlock Holmes” with William Gillette [a collaboration between the Cinémathèque française and the San Francisco Silent Film Festival]. He has written two books with J.B. Kaufman on Walt Disney’s early films, the award-winning “Walt in Wonderland” (1992) and “Walt Disney’s Silly Symphonies(2006). His articles have appeared in “Griffithiana”, in the Giornate festival catalogues since 1999, and in all 12 volumes of the Giornate’s “The Griffith Project” (1997–2008). He has been a guest film curator at museums and numerous film festivals.

April 4 – 7 

Iluzjon cinema 

Narbutta 50a
02-541 Warsaw