The Institute’s first Blu-ray/DVD project will be Ramona (1928), directed by Edwin Carewe and starring Dolores del Rio and Warner Baxter. This film was considered lost for nearly 80 years. Its survival was confirmed in 2010 at Narodni filmovy archiv (NFA) in Prague, Czech Republic, by Institute director Hugh Munro Neely, along with historians Dydia DeLyser and Joanne Hearne.
At Neely’s urging, the Library of Congress began work with NFA on the preservation of the film. The project was extended when an even second copy of the film was discovered in the collection of Gosfilmofond in Russia.
With the help of producer Diane Allen, granddaughter of Edwin Carewe, the film’s director, Timeline Films and the Institute for Film Education are preparing a home video release. The release will feature a musical score prepared especially for the film and recorded by the Mont Alto Motion Picture Orchestra. Also included on the disc will be the two additional surviving silent film interpretations of the Ramona story: the complete 1910 one-reel Ramona, directed by D.W. Griffith and featuring Mary Pickford and Henry B. Walthall, and the single surviving reel of mamoth 1916 feature version, directed by Donald Crisp, starring Adda Gleason and Monroe Salisbury.
Release is expected in early 2018.