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 home >> Civil Rights History Project >> Survey of Collections and Repositories >> Collections >> Collection Record

The Civil Rights History Project: Survey of Collections and Repositories

Dick Fontaine collection

Repository: Harvard University. Fine Arts Library. Film Archive

Collection Description (Extant): The Dick Fontaine paper and outtakes collection contains research materials, production materials, and the films of Grapevine Productions, run by Dick Fontaine and Pat Hartley. The majority of materials are related to the research and production of the film, "I Heard it Through the Grapevine," a documentary in which writer James Baldwin revisits the deep south to reexamine the scenes of civil rights strife in the sixties. The film material includes 16 mm picture and sound outtakes from the film. The paper material includes pre-production materials related to the topic of the film, including research, notes, newspaper clippings, reports, and correspondence. It also includes production materials, including scripts, interview transcripts, shot lists, correspondence, contracts, clearances, as well as materials regarding the screening and reception of the film, including publicity materials, reviews, correspondence, and contracts.
The archive also contains a smaller portion of paper material for other works by Grapevine Productions, including the music documentaries "Beat This: A Hip Hop History" (1984), "Art Blakey: The Jazz Messenger" (1988), and the book project "Earl: The Autobiography of DMX," which would later be published by Fontaine and Hartley's son, Smokey Fontaine. Also in the collection are scripts, notations, and budgets for Mrs. Chaney's Quilt, a film project started by Fontaine and Hartley around 1994 based on the life of Fannie Lee Chaney, mother of American civil rights worker James Earl Chaney who was murdered during Freedom Summer by members of the Ku Klux Klan near Philadelphia, Mississippi. The project was never completed, but audio cassettes and videotapes from interviews conducted with Fannie Lee Chaney and people close to the family exist in the Harvard Film Archive's collection. The Bremer Project refers to an unfinished film project based on the attempt by Arthur H. Bremer to assassinate Governor George Wallace in 1972. "Tomorrow Brought Us Rain" is a project for the stage based on the works of James Baldwin as arranged by Dick Fontaine.

Access Copy Note: Access by appointment only. Applications to consult this material should be directed to the staff of the Harvard Film Archive.

Date(s): 1960-1990

Digital Status: No

Existing IDs: Call No.: hfa00004

Extent: 63 boxes

Finding Aid URL: External Link

Language: English

Interviewees: James Baldwin, Fannie Lee Chaney

Rights (Extant): Reproduction and/or publication of materials subject to copyright requires written permission from a) the copyright owner, his/her heirs or assigns and from b) the Fine Arts Library, owner of the original material.


African American authors
Chaney, James Earl, 1943-1964
Civil rights movements--Southern States
Mississippi Freedom Project
Wallace, George C. (George Corley), 1919-1998--Assassination attempt, 1972


Sound recordings


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   May 15, 2015
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