Re: Helen Levitt's In the Street Film

Gary Handman (ghandman@library.berkeley.edu)
Fri, 1 Mar 2002 16:35:43 -0800 (PST)

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You're thinking perhaps of

The Quiet One (1949) (AVAILABLE FROM FACETS et al)
Film Documents, Inc. Distribution Co. Mayer-Burstyn, Inc. New York=20
opening:
12 Feb 1949 [=A9 ] 67min.; PCA cert no. Passed by the National Board=
=20
of Review
Gauge: 16

Production Credits: Producer Janice Loeb; Associate Producer William
Levitt; Director Sidney Meyers; Writer Helen Levitt; Writer Janice Loeb;=
=20
Writer Sidney
Meyers; Commentary and dialogue writer James Agee; Photography Richard=20
Bagley; Doc
photography Helen Levitt; Doc photography Janice Loeb; Editor Helen=20
Levitt; Editor
Janice Loeb; Editor Sidney Meyers; Music Ulysses Kay; Sound effects=20
editor Stanley
Katis; Special sound effects Richard Bagley; Special sound effects Jack=
=20
Kling; Psychiatric
consultant Viola Bernard, M.D.; Technical assistant Robert L.=20
CooperExecutive director
Wiltwyck School for Boys ; Technical assistant Nathan StillmanDirector=20
Wiltwyck School for
Boys ; .
Cast: Gary Merrill (Narrator), Donald Thompson (Donald Peters), Clarence=
=20
Cooper (The
counselor [Clarence]), Sadie Stockton (The grandmother), Estelle Evans=20
(The mother), Paul
Baucum (The stepfather), The staff and the boys of Wiltwyck School ,=20
[Sidney Meyers
(Psychiatrist)]
Genre: Documentary; Drama
Broad Subject: African Americans; Family relationships; Neglected=20
children; Wiltwyck School
for Boys
Specific Subjects: Art objects; Fistfights; Jealousy; New York City;=20
Psychiatrists; Teachers
Ethnic Category: African Americans
Plot Summary: Ten-year-old Donald Peters, who is black, is one of the=20
boys attending the
Wiltwyck School for Boys at Esopus, New York. For months Donald makes no=
=20
friends, does
not smile and barely talks. Donald, whose father abandoned his family,=20
and whose mother
became involved with another man and rejected him in favor of her new=20
family, receives no letters
and cannot read. Donald's life before coming to Wiltwyck was hard: After=
=20
his mother leaves him,
Donald stays with his grandmother, who resents his presence and=20
frequently beats him. Donald
has a hard time in school, and the teachers are too busy to help him.=20
Donald often wanders alone
through the city, and his anger at his situation often erupts in=20
destructive behavior. This
background has brought him to Wiltwyck. Eventually, Donald shyly makes=20
friends with Clarence,
one of the counselors. Mrs. Johnson, one of the teachers, helps the=20
children work out their
problems by making various objects. One day, while working with clay,=20
Donald remembers a day
at the beach with his family and, for the rest of the afternoon, is=20
deeply disturbed. Clarence helps
comfort him and through that connection, Donald starts to change. Donald=
=20
learns to read and
begins to interact with the other boys. When Donald wishes to give his=20
mother a bowl he has
made, the psychiatrist sadly tells him that his mother has disappeared.=20
After some thought, Donald
puts a plant in the bowl and gives it to Clarence, a sign of healing.=20
Donald is not healthy enough
yet to understand that he must share Clarence's attention with the other=
=20
boys, however, and
jealously takes back his gift and then tears apart the dorm room. The=20
teachers allow Donald to
work out his problems for himself. After stealing Clarence's cigarette=20
lighter, Donald runs away,
but eventually begins to accept his life and returns to school. He=20
returns the lighter to the
sympathetic Clarence and begins to make friends with other boys his age.=
=20
Although he has not
overcome all his pain, Donald has started on the road to recovery.
Note: Helen Levitt, Janice Loeb and Sidney Meyers' credit reads: "Written=
=20
and edited by." The film begins
with the following written foreword: "This film was made in New York City=
=20
and at the Wiltwyck School at
Esopus, New York. Wiltwyck is a school for boys of New York City who have=
=20
reacted with grave disturbance
of personality to neglect in their homes and in their community, and who,=
=20
for various reasons of age, religion,
race or special maladjustments are not cared for by other agencies."=20
According to reviews, the story was
based on case histories at Wiltwyck. Production notes add the following=20
information about the film: This was
the first production of Film Documents, Inc., which had been organized=20
two years earlier. Donald Thompson
was not a professional actor. Because his father would not allow him to=20
miss school to make the film, the
picture was shot after school and on the weekends. Filming took place=20
during the summer, when Thompson
lived at Wiltwyck with the other boys. Clarence Cooper was an actual=20
counselor at Wiltwyck, and Paul
Baucum was a musician. Estelle Evans and Sadie Stockton were the only=20
professional actors in the film. Levitt
and Loeb had previously made a short film in East Harlem, and according=20
to the Variety review, some scenes
in this film were also shot in Harlem. The review also notes that "while=
=20
Thompson is a Negro, the film makes
no explicit comments on any racial problems, developing a story that=20
could have happened to any kid." A 12
Nov 1948 Hollywood Reporter news item notes that the 16mm film was made=20
for $30,000. It received Academy
Award nominations for Best Documentary Feature and for Best Writing.
Source citations: Box Office 23 Apr 1949.; Daily Variety 31 Mar 1949, p.=
=20
3.; Film Daily 7
Apr 1949, p. 7.; Hollywood Reporter 12 Nov 1948.; Hollywood Reporter 17=20
Feb 1949, p.
6.; Hollywood Reporter 1 Apr 1949, p. 4.; New York Times 14 Feb 1949, p.=
=20
15.; Variety 16
Feb 1949, p. 13.

At 02:54 PM 3/1/2002 -0800, gzelenka@park-ridge.lib.il.us wrote:
>This message is in MIME format. Since your mail reader does not understand
>this format, some or all of this message may not be legible.
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>
>Happy Friday!
>
>Does anyone know anything about this 1952 doc that Helen Levitt did with
>Janice Loeb? Any chance of getting a copy somehow?
>
>Thanks, Gena
>
>
>Gena K. Zelenka
>A/V and Adult Programming Librarian
>Reader Services
>PARK RIDGE PUBLIC LIBRARY
>20 S. Prospect Ave.
>Park Ridge, IL 60068
>847-825-3123 x389
>Fax: 847-825-0001
>gzelenka@park-ridge.lib.il.us
>
>
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>Helen Levitt's In the Street Film
>
>Happy Friday!
>
>Does anyone know anything about this 1952 doc that =3D Helen Levitt did=
with=20
>Janice Loeb? Any chance of getting a copy =3D somehow?
>
>Thanks, Gena
>
>Gena K. Zelenka
>A/V and Adult Programming Librarian
>Reader Services
>PARK RIDGE PUBLIC LIBRARY
>20 S. Prospect Ave.
>Park Ridge, IL 60068
>847-825-3123 x389
>Fax: 847-825-0001
>gzelenka@park-ridge.lib.il.us
>
>------_=3D_NextPart_001_01C1C173.CB081970--

Gary Handman
Director
Media Resources Center
Moffitt Library
UC Berkeley, CA 94720-6000
510-643-8566
ghandman@library.berkeley.edu

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Content-Transfer-Encoding: quoted-printable

You're thinking perhaps of

The Quiet One (1949) (AVAILABLE FROM FACETS et al)
      Film Documents, Inc. Distribution Co. Mayer-Burstyn, Inc. New York opening:
      12 Feb 1949 [=A9 ] 67min.; PCA cert no.  Passed by the National Board of Review
      Gauge: 16

 Production Credits: Producer Janice Loeb; Associate Producer  William
 Levitt; Director Sidney Meyers; Writer Helen Levitt; Writer  Janice Loeb; Writer  Sidney
 Meyers; Commentary and dialogue writer  James Agee; Photography Richard Bagley; Doc
 photography  Helen Levitt; Doc photography  Janice Loeb; Editor Helen Levitt; Editor
 Janice Loeb; Editor  Sidney Meyers; Music Ulysses Kay; Sound effects editor Stanley
 Katis; Special sound effects  Richard Bagley; Special sound effects  Jack Kling; Psychiatric
 consultant Viola Bernard, M.D.; Technical assistant  Robert L. CooperExecutive director
 Wiltwyck School for Boys ; Technical assistant  Nathan StillmanDirector Wiltwyck School for
 Boys ; .
 Cast: Gary Merrill (Narrator), Donald Thompson (Donald Peters), Clarence Cooper (The
 counselor [Clarence]), Sadie Stockton (The grandmother), Estelle Evans (The mother), Paul
 Baucum (The stepfather), The staff and the boys of Wiltwyck School , [Sidney Meyers
 (Psychiatrist)]
 Genre: Documentary; Drama
 Broad Subject: African Americans; Family relationships; Neglected children; Wiltwyck School
 for Boys
 Specific Subjects: Art objects; Fistfights; Jealousy; New York City; Psychiatrists; Teachers
 Ethnic Category: African Americans
 Plot Summary: Ten-year-old Donald Peters, who is black, is one of the boys attending the
 Wiltwyck School for Boys at Esopus, New York. For months Donald makes no friends, does
 not smile and barely talks. Donald, whose father abandoned his family, and whose mother
 became involved with another man and rejected him in favor of her new family, receives no letters
 and cannot read. Donald's life before coming to Wiltwyck was hard: After his mother leaves him,
 Donald stays with his grandmother, who resents his presence and frequently beats him. Donald
 has a hard time in school, and the teachers are too busy to help him. Donald often wanders alone
 through the city, and his anger at his situation often erupts in destructive behavior. This
 background has brought him to Wiltwyck. Eventually, Donald shyly makes friends with Clarence,
 one of the counselors. Mrs. Johnson, one of the teachers, helps the children work out their
 problems by making various objects. One day, while working with clay, Donald remembers a day
 at the beach with his family and, for the rest of the afternoon, is deeply disturbed. Clarence helps
 comfort him and through that connection, Donald starts to change. Donald learns to read and
 begins to interact with the other boys. When Donald wishes to give his mother a bowl he has
 made, the psychiatrist sadly tells him that his mother has disappeared. After some thought, Donald
 puts a plant in the bowl and gives it to Clarence, a sign of healing. Donald is not healthy enough
 yet to understand that he must share Clarence's attention with the other boys, however, and
 jealously takes back his gift and then tears apart the dorm room. The teachers allow Donald to
 work out his problems for himself. After stealing Clarence's cigarette lighter, Donald runs away,
 but eventually begins to accept his life and returns to school. He returns the lighter to the
 sympathetic Clarence and begins to make friends with other boys his age. Although he has not
 overcome all his pain, Donald has started on the road to recovery.
 Note: Helen Levitt, Janice Loeb and Sidney Meyers' credit reads: "Written and edited by." The film begins
 with the following written foreword: "This film was made in New York City and at the Wiltwyck School at
 Esopus, New York. Wiltwyck is a school for boys of New York City who have reacted with grave disturbance
 of personality to neglect in their homes and in their community, and who, for various reasons of age, religion,
 race or special maladjustments are not cared for by other agencies." According to reviews, the story was
 based on case histories at Wiltwyck. Production notes add the following information about the film: This was
 the first production of Film Documents, Inc., which had been organized two years earlier. Donald Thompson
 was not a professional actor. Because his father would not allow him to miss school to make the film, the
 picture was shot after school and on the weekends. Filming took place during the summer, when Thompson
 lived at Wiltwyck with the other boys. Clarence Cooper was an actual counselor at Wiltwyck, and Paul
 Baucum was a musician. Estelle Evans and Sadie Stockton were the only professional actors in the film. Levitt
 and Loeb had previously made a short film in East Harlem, and according to the Variety review, some scenes
 in this film were also shot in Harlem. The review also notes that "while Thompson is a Negro, the film makes
 no explicit comments on any racial problems, developing a story that could have happened to any kid." A 12
 Nov 1948 Hollywood Reporter news item notes that the 16mm film was made for $30,000. It received Academy
 Award nominations for Best Documentary Feature and for Best Writing.
 Source citations: Box Office 23 Apr 1949.; Daily Variety 31 Mar 1949, p. 3.; Film Daily 7
 Apr 1949, p. 7.; Hollywood Reporter 12 Nov 1948.; Hollywood Reporter 17 Feb 1949, p.
 6.; Hollywood Reporter 1 Apr 1949, p. 4.; New York Times 14 Feb 1949, p. 15.; Variety 16
 Feb 1949, p. 13.






At 02:54 PM 3/1/2002 -0800, gzelenka@park-ridge.lib.il.us wrote:

This message is in MIME format. Since your mail reader does not understand
this format, some or all of this message may not be legible.

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        charset=3D&qu= ot;iso-8859-1"

Happy Friday!

Does anyone know anything about this 1952 doc that Helen Levitt did with
Janice Loeb?  Any chance of getting a copy somehow?

Thanks, Gena


Gena K. Zelenka
A/V and Adult Programming Librarian
Reader Services
PARK RIDGE PUBLIC LIBRARY
20 S. Prospect Ave.
Park Ridge, IL   60068
847-825-3123 x389
Fax: 847-825-0001
gzelenka@park-ridge.lib.il.us
 

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Helen Levitt's In the Street Film

Happy Friday!

Does anyone know anything about this 1952 doc that =3D Helen Levitt did with Janice Loeb?  Any chance of getting a copy =3D somehow?

Thanks, Gena

Gena K. Zelenka
A/V and Adult Programming Librarian
Reader Services
PARK RIDGE PUBLIC LIBRARY
20 S. Prospect Ave.
Park Ridge, IL   60068
847-825-3123 x389
Fax: 847-825-0001
gzelenka@park-ridge.lib.il.us
 
------_=3D_NextPart_001_01C1C173.CB081970--

Gary Handman
Director
Media Resources Center
Moffitt Library
UC Berkeley, CA 94720-6000
510-643-8566
ghandman@library.berkeley.edu

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