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On April 30, 2021, Hungary will celebrate the 120 year  anniversary of the very first Hungarian film, Béla Zsitkovszky and Gyula Pekár’s A Táncz (The Dance).

Following its tradition, the Hungarian National Film Institute will hold its annual Hungarian Film Day on April 30, digitally. This year is special, however. In the spirit of the film’s anniversary, the Hungarian National Film Institute (NFI) will also launch the Hungarica Motion Picture Research Program for the research and recovery of Hungarian film history.

A TÁNCZ film poster © NFI Film Archive

The program is essential, since one third of all Hungarian films produced in the 120 year long history have been deemed lost or missing. This includes Zsitkovszky and Pekár’s A Táncz, of which only pictures remain.

The director of the NFI Film Archives, György Ráduly, said that the institute is in “the final hours” of discovering, saving, and if possible repatriating the lost films. Soon, the recovered films will be available in the institute’s digital archives.

A museum exhibit is also planned following the NFI event. In July the Ludwig Museum, in cooperation with NFI, will open the Nagylátószög (Wide Angle) exhibit, displaying the rich and exciting history of Hungarian film from its conception to modern times.

The exhibit will include the many international successes of the Hungarian film industry, as well as all the world-famous Hungarian stars who had an impact on the industry as a whole.

The institute also cites the accessibility of quality films for youth as one of its main priorities. The Basefilms and Classical Education and Youth Programs both serve this purpose, providing films for educational purposes. In 2021, a number of these films will be offered for free in schools.

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On Monday, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán announced stricter restrictions in order to curb the spread of the coronavirus epidemic, including a night curfew and the closure of theaters, cinemas, museums, and other cultural institutions. The restrictions result in cultural venues struggling to make ends meet, trying to find a solution for keeping part of their […]Continue reading

Starting April 30, 20 classic Hungarian comedies will be available for free for ten days following Hungarian Film Day. These films include Hyppolit, a lakáj (Hyppolit, the Butler), Liliomfi, and the most viewed Hungarian film of all time, Mágnás Miska (Mickey Magnate).

Featured photo from A TÁNCZ c. film © NFI Film Archive