I reported on one Buster Keaton restoration project in the summer – and now there is another one. This one comes to us courtesy of the fabulous Lobster Films in Paris, and proves that there is more than one way to skin a cat.
This project has both a narrower and a wider focus – the aim is to complete restorations of Buster’s short films only, but the list runs to 32 and includes those that he made with Roscoe Arbuckle, such as his movie debut, The Butcher’s Boy (1917). And Lobster will be taking elements from archives and collections around the world, to get the best possible result. Not only that, the team will be commissioning new scores for all the films that they work on.
Here’s an extract from the polished version of The Playhouse (1920), to show you what is planned:
It’s a much shorter project, in terms of timeframe, also. Lobster hopes to be done and dusted around the beginning of the new year, and to get the scheme going, it has launched a Kickstarter deal, running all this month
I’ll let the amazing Serge Bromberg explain further, and persuade you to kick in some coins:
Can you ever have too much Buster Keaton? I will let you decide that for yourself, but just think that if you do cough up, wherever he is, old Buster might look down on you and smile. Almost.