BFI expands classic films online archive

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The British Film Institute has expanded its online archive of great British films and TV programmes with a selection of short films from the likes of Stephen Frears, the late John Schlesinger, and brothers Tony and Ridley Scott. There are also six features available including Pressure from 1974.

The archive currently contains nearly a quarter of a million films and 675,000 TV programmes, and can be downloaded for between £5 and £12.50.

The film minister Shaun Woodward extolled these “vintage and rarely-seen films” which are now opened up to anyone going online rather than having to visit a specialist cinema. “This is a fantastic resource for the public who will now, more easily, get to see films from a bygone era.”

Extra titles will be released on a monthly basis including older films and some quite recent TV shows.

Amanda Nevill, BFI Director, says: ‘As we launch our new-look website today and this further range of products, resources and services from the Archive, we are well on the way to meeting the challenge of opening up this extraordinary resource even more and working to exploit the enormous potential offered by new technologies. Film and television are a social record, a historical resource, a chance to travel through time and to share the dreams and aspirations of artists, directors and writers. BFI Online is about sharing that passion and delivering more of our film and television heritage via the Web.’

BFI Web site

Andy Merrett