Archive of films Story of Film: An Odyssey / The Story of Film: An Odyssey

United Kingdom
2011, 900 min

Section: Out of the Past
Year: 2012

This 15-hour documentary series can without exaggeration be labelled the film event of the season. Cousins’s suggestive "love letter” to the film medium invites us on an epic journey through the history of film. His original take on the development of the seventh art includes interviews with outstanding filmmakers (Scorsese, Donen) and, with emphasis on the importance of context, brings up unjustly neglected directors and regions.


"Made over six years, on four continents, covering 11 decades, and a thousand films.” Thus reads the tagline of the film event of the year, the 15-hour documentary project by Mark Cousins, who invites us on an epic journey through cinematic history. The author’s own renowned book of the same name served as his starting point for the film. This original look at the development of the seventh art, from silent film through the digital era, features interviews with outstanding moviemakers (Martin Scorsese and Stanley Donen, among many others). Emphasizing the importance of context, the encyclopedic work highlights unjustly neglected directors, forgotten film stars, and less conspicuous but no less significant regions. Cousins’s immense erudition and remarkable ability to trace artistic and technological connections through the decades make The Story of Film, with its numerous iconic clips, an utter pleasure for the eyes and souls of film lovers everywhere. Cousins’s vivid love letter to the motion picture arts will be screened in five three-hour segments.

About the director

Mark Cousins

Mark Cousins is a filmmaker, writer, curator, and wanderer. His first movie, aptly named The First Movie, took the Prix Italia. Last fall he began promoting his premier project The Story of Film: An Odyssey through screenings at numerous festivals (Toronto, Berlin, etc.) and at MoMA in New York. He is the author of the books The Story of Film (2004), Imagining Reality: The Faber Book of Documentary (with Kevin Macdonald, 2006), and Widescreen: Watching Real People Elsewhere (2008), a collection of essays on film. Together, he and Tilda Swinton manage the 8½ Foundation, which focuses on popularizing world cinema among children. Cousins is a former director of the Edinburgh film festival, which this year world premiered his latest movie What Is This Film Called Love (screened in the Official Selection – Out of Competition at this year’s KVIFF).


Film Europe s.r.o.
V Jámě 1, 110 00, Praha 1
Czech Republic
E-mail: [email protected]

The Festival Agency
Kwerk, 22 Bd Malesherbes, 750 08, Paris
Tel: +33 954 904 863
E-mail: [email protected]

HanWay Films
8 Basing Street, W11 1ET, London
United Kingdom
Tel: +44 207 290 0750
E-mail: [email protected]

About the film

Color, DCP

Section: Out of the Past
Director: Mark Cousins
Screenplay: Mark Cousins
Dir. of Photography: Mark Cousins
Editor: Timo Lange
Producer: John Archer
Production: Hopscotch Films
Contact: Film Europe s.r.o., The Festival Agency, HanWay Films
Distributor: Film Europe s.r.o.


Ivan Hronec

Cinema Representative, Distributor, Festival Organizer, TV Representative

Mark Cousins

Film Director

Leslie Vuchot

Distributor, Service Company Rep.

Jana Krupičková


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