April 5, 2005  

Librarian documentary crew films Scorsese, Bradbury

MADISON, WI – The producers of the new documentary “The Hollywood Librarian: A Look at Librarians in Film” announced that filming has begun. Footage shot to date includes Martin Scorsese at a New York Public Library event in December 2004 as well as a face-to-face interview with Ray Bradbury conducted in March.

Cameras were rolling on December 7, 2004, at the 100th anniversary celebration of the Tompkins Square branch in Manhattan where Mr. Scorsese visited regularly as a child.  The celebrated movie director spoke nostalgically about his early use of the branch. “For us to come to this library, you can’t imagine,” he told the gathering of 200 patrons, staff and trustees.  “It was a real respite.  It was quiet.  There was real reverence for the books. And I fell in love with the books.”  Mr. Scorsese sheepishly confessed to removing photographs from a book on film that he had borrowed repeatedly. He took the opportunity to present the branch with a mint condition replacement copy.

Author Ray Bradbury was on hand for several Book Week events hosted by the Long Beach (CA) Public Library Foundation from March 14 through March 19.  The community was reading “Fahrenheit 451” and the film crew was fortunate to be able to capture an intergenerational discussion of the book. Mr. Bradbury consented to an interview with Ann Seidl, writer and director of the documentary.  Famous for his support of libraries, Bradbury said on camera, “Teachers are to inspire.  Libraries are to fulfill.”

Footage of the two celebrities will be included as background for the central subject of the documentary, librarians.  While on location in Southern California, the documentary film crew interviewed librarians in three locales in the greater Los Angeles area: Long Beach Public Library, Cerritos Library and the Norris Medical Library at the University of Southern California.

The producers continue to solicit funding from library supporters in order to secure the rights to dozens of Hollywood film clips and to continue interviewing librarians and celebrities.