Within the COLLATE-project
the Filmarchiv Austria (FAA) is leader of the task 8.3, which is the production
of film surrogates. For this task - and the related points of theoretical
reconstruction - FAA choose to edit and to work on the movie CAFÉ
ELEKTRIC. On this example the possibilities of such an surrogate production
could be demonstrated. The NFI-Archive in Prague was working on the film
GESANG DES GOLDES (ZPEV ZLATA) (CZ, 1920) with a similar target.
The Surrogate Production is the attempt of reconstructing a missing film,
or even parts of it, based not only on film-material, but also including
other historical material. So a true and historically correct theoretical
version of the missing film can be created.
As mentioned, the Surrogate Production isn't a variant of the classical
film-restoration, for example to restore damaged material; to work on
the reconstruction this way would be impossible (because the parts are
still missing) and hermeneutical incorrect. In this strategy the missing
film, or in the case of CAFÉ ELECTRIK the missing part, should
be reconstructed by intensive work and analyses of the given sources and
parts of the film. So the main-target is not the reconstruction of the
film itself; it is some kind of a suggestion, what the whole looked like.
The unavoidable difference between Surrogate Production and the original
film can not (and should not) be kept as a secret. It is the remarkable
and most important point: there won't be such a thing like the classical-reconstruction
linearity; there'll be - under the given and chosen circumstances - something
like a lamination of the different sources.
The sub-project profits from the synergies of the COLLATE-project and
allows to work on this task with the sources of three international archives
and it triples the possibilities to succeed with the advised targets.
On one hand the Surrogate Edition is also a good possibility to promote
the COLLATE main-idea, i.e. the necessity of a cross-border collaboration
of archives to promote a better, and even more effective, analysis of
given sources and informations. On the other hand, there's also an economical
aspect: The archives are not only keeper of cultural heritage; based on
such scientific results, it can also be utilised in economical way like
publications etc. The materials, which are collected within the project.
So the work in the project isn't limited to the analysis of written documents;
within this subproject a more film-specific work can be done.
Elektrik: A reconstruction of the lost last act
An experimental reconstruction of the lost film