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The Lost World of Friese-Greene in May

bfi Video have announced the UK DVD release of The Lost World of Friese-Greene for 3rd May 2006 priced at £19.99. Following the success of their collaboration on The Lost World of Mitchell & Kenyon, the BBC and the British Film Institute have co-produced a new television series, The Lost World of Friese-Greene beginning on BBC Two on Tuesday 18 April, which will be released on DVD immediately after the final episode is broadcast.

In 1924 pioneering filmmaker Claude Friese-Greene embarked on an intrepid road trip from Land’s End to John O’Groats. He recorded his journey on film, using an experimental colour process that he had developed with his father, William Friese-Greene. The result was a remarkable travelogue called The Open Road. Reviewers hailed it as an amazing success at which audiences would ‘gasp with wonder’, since they had previously only seen their world recorded in black and white.

Eighty years after Claude’s original trip, the BBC and the British Film Institute have recreated the journey, and in this three-part series Dan Cruickshank boards a vintage car and retraces Claude’s route through the heart of Britain. Drawing fully on Claude’s original footage, which has been meticulously restored by the bfi, this wonderful series affords contemporary audiences a vibrant glimpse at life in the 1920s, and a chance to examine not only how much has changed, but also all that has remained the same since that time.

On the route through scenic West Country, into Wales, up the west coast to Scotland, and on to John O’Groats, we hear from a cast of characters - not only relatives and friends of those who appear in Claude’s footage, but those who featured in the films as children, and who describe the moving experience of encountering themselves within this beautiful footage.
Episode 1 - Land’s End to Weston-super-Mare
Episode 2 - Cirencester to Carlisle
Episode 3 - Gretna Green to John O’Groats


  • More Stories: Cinematographer Jack Cardiff (The Red Shoes, Black Narcissus and A Matter of Life and Death) remembers Friese-Greene, plus extended interviews with those who feature in this series, including the grandson of landscape artist Lamorna Birch, and son of legendary Cardiff footballer Hughie Ferguson.

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