1/7/2018: Memorial Service for Stephen Parr

The Memorial for Founder and Director of Oddball Films and the San Francisco Media Archive, Stephen Parr is scheduled for January 7th, 2018 at the Roxie Theater (3117 16th St, San Francisco, CA 94103) from 12:30pm - 3:00pm to be followed by a reception. The program details and location of the reception will follow. 
There will be film, there will be performances, there will be remembrances, there will be friends and colleagues. 
We are still accepting input about the program and are interested in presenting a program Stephen would enjoy. 
For those of you who are connected to Stephen from Syracuse, or who are nearby to Syracuse, there are services for Stephen planned in Syracuse with a wake at Farone's on Sunday December 10th,  3:00-5:00. Farone's is located at: 
1500 Park Street, Syracuse , NY , 13208
Telephone: (315) 422-1911
The burial will be the following day at 11 am Greenlawn Cemetery in Warners, NY and the family will be leaving from the funeral home. 
We would also like to share this video Stephen made for the Friends of Helen Hill program as part of the 2017 Association of Moving Image Archivists (AMIA) Conference that took place this past week. We thought Stephen's humor and keen use of archival footage would be appreciated during this time.
More details about the memorial will follow and we thank you for your support. 

In Remembrance

Sadly, founder and Director of Oddball Films and the San Francisco Media Archive, Stephen Parr, passed away suddenly on October 24, 2017 after a struggle with declining health. His family and Oddball staff have come together and are carefully working on ensuring a productive future for both entities while preserving the proud tradition of providing the most eclectic footage to our customers. Oddball continues to fill your orders for the most unusual and hard to find material for your projects. 
Concurrently, we are accessing the arts community of the most creative city in the world to help reshape Oddball Films. Exciting and challenging, we are confident that we will be able to maintain the high quality of our product and services.
A Memorial Service for Stephen Parr is being planned for early 2018. Details to follow.

Cinema Soiree - The Making of Maupin: Tales of the Archive, 10/26 (EVENT POSTPONED)

Due to some unforeseen circumstances, the Oddball Cinema Soiree with Jennifer Kroot scheduled for October 26th is being postponed. At this time, the new date of the event has yet to be confirmed. Thank you for your interest, and stay tuned to oddballfilms.blogspot.com for updates. 

We are are pleased to announce that local documentarian and director of The Untold Tales of Armistead Maupin Jennifer Kroot and her co-director/editor Bill Weber will be joining us at the archive for the next iteration of our Cinema Soiree series, and are thrilled to have provided over five minutes of rare archival material for the film.
The Untold Tales of Armistead Maupin examines the life and work of one of the world’s most beloved storytellers, following his evolution from a conservative son of the Old South into a gay rights pioneer whose novels have inspired millions to claim their own truth. Jennifer Kroot’s documentary about the creator of Tales of the City moves nimbly between playful and poignant and laugh-out-loud funny. With help from his friends (including Neil Gaiman, Laura Linney, Olympia Dukakis, Sir Ian McKellen and Amy Tan), Maupin offers a disarmingly frank look at the journey that took him from the jungles of Vietnam to the bathhouses of 70’s San Francisco to the front line of the American culture war.
On Thursday, October 26th at 8:00 PM, Kroot and Weber will be in attendance at Oddball to present our next Cinema Soiree, The Making of Maupin: Tales of the Archive, an in-depth examination of their archival process, with exclusive commentary, deleted scenes, and plenty of LGBT footage from our collection to provide insight into the writer's cultural context and historical moment.
Plus! The film will be screening for one week only beginning this Friday, September 22nd at the Roxie Theater. Jennifer Kroot will attend for opening night, and will be joined by Maupin himself on Sunday, September 24th at 3:15 PM and 6:00 PM. See the film first, and then join us for a behind-the-scenes look at how it got made!

The Making of Maupin

Tales of the Archive

Thursday, October 26, 8:00 PM


This event has been postponed. Stay tuned for an announcement about new date. Next month, Jennifer Kroot and her editor/co-director Bill Weber will be stopping by Oddball Films to present a behind-the-scenes look at the making of The Untold Tales of Armistead Maupin. Comparing scenes from the finished film with the Oddball sources it draws from, Kroot and Weber will talk about the process of turning archival research into a coherent vision, and how they sought to convey Maupin's unique milieu in their film. ALSO! Deleted scenes and film excerpts from San Francisco's gay underground (including A Marriage Manual for Male Homosexuals and much more!) provide context for Armistead's work and world. Stay tuned for a complete description of the program.
Seating is extremely limited for this event and it will sell out. RSVP now!

Venue & Ticket Info

Venue: Oddball Films
275 Capp Street, San Francisco (map)
Tickets: $12.00, seating limited
RSVP to rsvp@oddballfilms.com or 415-558-8112 POSTPONED
Web: oddballfilms.blogspot.com
About Jennifer Kroot

Jennifer Kroot is a seasoned documentary filmmaker. Kroot brings a background in underground filmmaking to her documentaries, and uses that sensibility to create surprises within her stories. Her tales incorporate shifts in pace and tone that allow a fluid and engaging structure. Kroot focuses on the humanity of her subjects, keeping their stories accessible and unpretentious.

Her most recent feature length documentary, To Be Takei, a portrait of actor/activist George Takei, premiered at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival and was released theatrically by Starz Digital in August 2014 to critical acclaim. Her feature documentary It Came From Kuchar, following cult filmmaking duo George and Mike Kuchar and also featuring footage from Oddball Films, premiered at the 2009 South by Southwest Film Festival. A Bay Area native, Kroot studied film at the San Francisco Art Institute, where she has also taught. She has been a guest lecturer at Stanford and University of Denver.

7/26 - The Holy Haight - screening at the Roxie!

Due to popular demand, Oddball Films is teaming up with author and historian Erik Davis to present a second screening of The Holy Haight: How the 60s Counterculture Changed American Religion Forever at the Roxie Theater on July 26th at 7:00 PM. If you missed it at Oddball in May, come out for a second chance to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Summer of Love with us!

Davis will draw on a kaleidoscopic array of clips from our vast archive of 60s and 70s era stock footage, amateur films, home movies, documentaries and experimental films. James Whitney's celebrated visionary short Lapis will get us in the mood for a spiritual carnival ranging from Dionysian Acid Tests to Alan Watts' Zen, Jesus Freaks to Satanic Massesrock star gurus to Pentagon marchesSufi Dances to Jewish Renewal hoedowns. From celebrity yoga to corporate mindfulness to today's psychedelic Renaissance, we continue to live in the shadow of the hippie mystics. Come catch some of the old sunshine! 

Venue & Ticket Info

Venue: Roxie Theater
3117 16th Street, San Francisco (map)
Tickets: $12.00
Buy Tickets

6/13 - Sonic Oddities at SF Doc Fest!

SF Doc Fest is fully underway, and Oddball Films is making its mark! We provided footage to two opening night films, Turn It Around: The Story of East Bay Punk and Take Every Wave: The Life of Laird Hamilton, and our director Stephen Parr heads to the Roxie Theater next Wednesday, June 13th at 7:15 PM for another iteration of Sonic Oddities, a live cinema-sound collaboration featuring local musician bran(...)pos.

Sonic Oddities Live

Tuesday, June 13th 7:15 PM

Sonic Oddities is Stephen Parr’s cinematic and auditory collision of film shorts, clips, fragments and reprocessed sounds. Drawn from his company Oddball Films' 50,000-film archive, this cinematic trek through the auditory oddities of film history features bizarre commercials, Religious propaganda films, campy movie trailers and Italian Spy films colliding with scenes of sunken jetliners, audio test tones and European animation.

With a live musical score and mix by bran(...)pos and Stephen Parr 

Click here for more information about this event.

Venue & Ticket Info

Venue: Roxie Theater
3117 16th Street, San Francisco (map)
Tickets: $12.00
Buy Tickets

Cinema Soiree - The Holy Haight: How the 60s Counterculture Changed American Religion Forever with Erik Davis, 5/25

The 60s counterculture overturned American politics, but it also radically transformed the practice of religion in America. On Thursday, May 25th, at 8:00 PM, local author, cultural historian, and PhD Erik Davis will be showing choice selections from Oddball Films' vast archive of 60s and 70s era stock footage, amateur films, home movies, pro documentaries, and experimental films in order to explore the many facets of hippie religion. James Whitney's celebrated visionary short "Lapis" will get us in the mood for a spiritual carnival ranging from Dionysian Acid Tests to Alan Watts' Zen, Jesus Freaks to Satanic Massesrock star gurus to Pentagon marches, Sufi Dances to Jewish Renewal hoedowns. From celebrity yoga to corporate mindfulness to today's psychedelic Renaissance, we continue to live in the shadow of the hippie mystics. Come catch some of the old sunshine! 

The event will take place May 25th at 8:00 PM at Oddball Films, 275 Capp Street in San Francisco. Admission is $12.00 (cash only). Event is SOLD OUT -- stay tuned for our next event!

Cinema Soiree: Pop Music Explosion with Richie Unterberger, 3/16

Next Thursday, March 16th, at 8:00 PM, Oddball Films invites you to an intimate evening with author and musicologist Richie Unterberger, inaugurating our new Cinema Soiree Series featuring visiting authors, filmmakers and curators presenting and sharing cinema insights, with a Q+A to follow. Unterberger will be here to present Pop Music Explosion: Film Footage Fantasia, featuring a plethora of footage and rock music film clips curated exclusively from the Oddball Films archives. Oddball Films, the largest archive in Northern California, is a major source of offbeat historical and contemporary footage for feature films, television, documentaries, and media productions worldwide. Unterberger will introduce and provide historical and cultural commentary on the films, honed from his many years as a researcher and writer. The event will take place March 16th at 8:00 PM at Oddball Films, 275 Capp Street in San Francisco. Admission is $10.00 (cash only). RSVP to: programming@oddballfilms.com or 415-558-8117.

TONIGHT: Rare Alan Lomax films at Swedish American Hall

Our 2017 events series begins tonight at 8:00 PM at the Swedish American Hall, where we will be co-presenting WHEN I LAY MY BURDEN DOWN with the Noise Pop Film Series. Join us for an evening of music films shot over six decades by the famed collector and researcher of folk music Alan Lomax.
And speaking of music, we will once again be opening our doors for 2017's premiere Cinema Soiree next month. On March 16th, author and musicologist Richie Unterberger will join us in person at Oddball for Pop Music Explosion: Film Footage Fantasia. Expect more information from us about this program next month.
As always, if you’re a filmmaker and use stock footage in your projects, search our site or contact us directly. You can also take a look at us on IMDB to see how we provided important footage to producers like Martin Scorsese and TV programming like The Americans, and how Oddball Films is continuing to work in 2017 as an exceptional resource for filmmakers everywhere.
We look forward to seeing you tonight!

When I Lay My Burden Down

Rare Footage from the Alan Lomax Archive, 1937-1983

Monday, February 20th 8:00 PM

Together with the Noise Pop Film Series, Oddball Films and the San Francisco Media Archive are thrilled to present WHEN I LAY MY BURDEN DOWN, an evening of films by legendary ethnomusicologist Alan Lomax. One of America's most significant and indomitable archivists, Lomax exhaustively documented traditional musical performances for seven decades, and the vast collection he left behind has defined our understanding of folk traditions across America and the world. Lomax shot the films in this program between 1937 and 1983, in locales ranging from Haiti to Kentucky, the Mississippi Delta to the Newport Folk Festival. Nathan Salzburg, curator of the Alan Lomax Archive, will be on hand to give a presentation and Q&A session after the screening.
Click here for more information about this event.

Venue & Ticket Info

Venue: Swedish American Hall
2174 Market Street, San Francisco (map)
Tickets: $12.00
Buy Tickets

Stay tuned for more details about our premiere Cinema Soiree for 2017-- Pop Music Explosion: Film Footage Fantasia on March 16, 2017, with Richie Unterberger, author and musicologist in person!

Looking Into 2017: Our New Event Series

We’d like to thank everyone for attending our screenings, soirees, and seminars. Our weekly film series has come to a close. In 2017 we will be presenting select events: We will be continuing our seasonal seminars and cinema soirees featuring writers, directors, and curators. Our premiere event, Pop Music Explosion: Film Footage Fantasia on March 16, 2017, is a cinema soiree with Richie Unterberger, author and musicologist. Going forward, these newsletters will be sent out monthly to give you the latest on upcoming events.

In presenting a new special events series, we are building on an important legacy. What began as an occasional screening from our stock footage archive grew into an award-winning weekly film series. Oddball Films showcased our rare and obscure films and featured international filmmakers and curators, with over 1,000 unique programs, all presented in their original format - 16mm film. We couldn’t be prouder!

A huge thank you goes out to our chief programmer, Kat Shuchter. She presented truly one-of-a-kind programming at Oddball Films over many successful seasons. Her creative spark and deep digging in our archives invigorated our series with over 200 eclectic and inventive thematic screenings, like Stop Motion Explosion!, Learn Your Lesson, Avant Garde Rarities, and many, many more.

Along the way we've worked with underground artists and directors like Paul H-O who appeared here at a soiree to discuss his controversial film Guest of Cindy Sherman. We provided famed filmmaker, Carroll Ballard with an original print of his 1975 abstract film Crystallization, and independent director. Nikolai Ursin also received an original print from us of his 1966 meditation on gender Behind Every Good Man for the UCLA Film & Television Archive’s restoration project. As we discovered forgotten or neglected prints for our screenings, we archived these films and programs into our database for future programmers, researchers, and scholars, and ultimately of course, for film audiences everywhere to enjoy them. We’ve enjoyed presenting weekly screenings as an important part of our stock footage business. We are still dedicated to entertaining our screenings audience and we will be presenting exciting events throughout 2017.

If you’re a filmmaker and use stock footage in your projects, search our site or contact us directly. See how we provided important footage to producers like Martin Scorsese and TV programming like The Americans, and how Oddball Films is moving into 2017 as an exceptional resource for filmmakers everywhere. We’re providing the same type of inventive footage we’ve been known to present in our screenings!

Watch this site and expect to hear from us in future newsletters.

Have a happy and fun-filled 2017!