Press/Journalists

Press Release
June 26, 2007

National Archives Marks 50th Anniversary of Little Rock

Special Film Program and Discussion of Charles Guggenheim’s Nine From Little Rock and Unveiling of Academy Award ® Display

Washington, DC…On Thursday, September 27, 2007, at 7 PM., The Charles Guggenheim Center for the Documentary Film at the National Archives, in partnership with the Smithsonian National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center, will present a screening and discussion of Charles Guggenheim’s 1964 Academy Award®-winning (Best Documentary Short Subject) film Nine From Little Rock. The program will be preceded by a ceremonial unveiling of a permanent display in the National Archives containing the Oscar® statuette awarded to Charles Guggenheim for the film - the first of four he would ultimately acquire. The statuette is on permanent loan from the Guggenheim family. Charles Guggenheim was President of the Foundation for the National Archives from 2000 to 2002.

The film program, which is free and open to the public, will take place in the William G. McGowan Theater at the National Archives Building in Washington, DC, which is located on the National Mall at Constitution Ave. and 7th Street, NW, and is fully accessible. Charles Guggenheim’s son and daughter, Academy Award®-winning filmmaker Davis Guggenheim (An Inconvenient Truth), and producer Grace Guggenheim (Berga: Soldiers of Another War), will offer special opening remarks at the program.

The film, produced by Guggenheim Productions, Inc. for the United States Information Agency (USIA), profiles the lives of the nine African-American students who integrated Little Rock Central High School during the fall of 1957. Nine From Little Rock documents the perspective of Jefferson Thomas and his fellow students seven years after their historic achievement. Nine From Little Rock is now part of the permanent motion picture holdings of the National Archives.

A distinguished panel will discuss the 20-minute film. Archivist of the United States Allen Weinstein will lead a discussion with the Honorable John Lewis, Congressman and former Chairman of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC); George Stevens, Jr., writer, director, producer, founder of the American Film Institute (AFI) and former head of the United States Information Agency’s Motion Picture Division (1962-67); Lonnie Bunch, Director of the National Museum of African American History and Culture; Carlotta Walls LaNier and Ernest Green, two members of the Little Rock Nine; Dorothy Gilliam, a journalist who covered the Little Rock events for the Tri-State Defender; and, Elizabeth Jacoway, author of Turn Away Thy Son: Little Rock, the Crisis that Shocked a Nation.

Seating for this program is on a first-come, first-served basis. For more information or to request an accommodation (e.g., sign language interpreter) for a public program, please e-mail public.program@nara.gov or call (202) 357-5000 at least two weeks prior to the event to ensure proper arrangements are secured.

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For press information contact the National Archives Public Affairs staff at 202-357-5300.

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