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Fort Lee Film Commission

Silent film costume found in Fort Lee, NJ

Silent film costume found in Fort Lee, NJ

Fort Lee Film Commission


The Film Costume Symposium at NYU

Fort Lee, NJ was the first American film town and as many as 17 studios operated in Fort Lee prior to World War I. In October of 2017, the Costume Studies program at New York University invited Fort Lee Film Commission Executive Director Tom Meyers to be a speaker at the Film Costume / State of the Art symposium. The Fort Lee Film Commission retrieved a trunk from historic Rambo's Hotel on First Street in the Coytesville. The trunk contained over a dozen costumes from the silent film period and for the presentation, Tom Meyers wished to display two of film costumes at the symposium. This required the film costumes to be carefully cleaned and prepared by Aanchal and a handful of other graduate students.

About the collaboration on the Fort Lee Film Commission’s website: https://www.barrymorefilmcenter.com/work-of-the-film-commission

Silent film costume found in Fort Lee, NJ

Silent film costume found in Fort Lee, NJ

Further Work with the Film Commission

After the 2017 Film Costume symposium, the Fort Lee Film Commission started a longtime collaboration with the NYU Costume Studies program. From October 2017 to September 2018, Aanchal worked on various projects for the Film Commission.

Some of the duties included:

  • To research the provenance of the discovered film costumes, and attempt to identify the year and/or silent films they belonged to.

  • To assist the Film Commission with organizing the archives housed in Fort Lee, in preparation for the new Barrymore Film Center.

  • To research the Barrymore family and their relationship to the town of Fort Lee, for a short documentary that is to be made for the Barrymore Film Center.