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May 24, 2007


Oscar-Winning Alumnus Alan Heim to Deliver Keynote Address

NEW YORK, May 24, 2007 - The M.F.A. in Media Arts Production at The City College of New York (CCNY) will celebrate its tenth birthday by premiering 11new documentary and short fiction films during Cityvisions 2007, its annual student showcase, June 1 and 2 at Manhattan’s DGA Theater.  The program is comprised of thesis projects from the Class of 2007.

Alan Heim, ’59, the Oscar-winning editor of Bob Fosse’s All That Jazz, will launch the celebration with a look back at his journey from the The Institute of Film Techniques at City College to Hollywood.  Mr. Heim will introduce an impressive lineup of Masters Thesis films that have already received support from The Princess Grace Foundation, Public Media Inc., New York Women in Film and Television and The Bert Saperstein Foundation.

The films include stories of: an Islamic man whose adherence to his faith forces a would-be criminal to reconsider a violent act; young boys from Tijuana who make their living smuggling workers across the border into the United States; a family coming to terms with the murder of a loved one as her convicted killer comes closer to parole, and a man of Pakistani origin holding a green card who is deported after taking an innocent snapshot of a nature scene that happens to be part of the New York State Water Supply system.

“These amazing projects continue the tradition in the M.F.A. program of making films that matter,” said M.F.A. Director Professor Dave Davidson.  “This group follows a class that won a student Oscar and Emmy Awards this year. Based on what I am seeing, I have every reason to believe these films will be equally well received.”

In addition to celebrating the M.F.A. program’s first decade, Cityvisions will mark the 50th Anniversary of the retirement of Hans Richter.  Professor Richter, a well-known member of the Dada movement and pioneering filmmaker and world-renowned film theorist, brought City College to the forefront of cinema education as Director of The Institute of Film Techniques from 1941 to 1957.

Mr. Heim, the keynote speaker, did some editing for Professor Richter when he was fresh out of CCNY’s Film Institute.  He went on to do edit such films as The Twelve Chairs by Mel Brooks, and Lenny, All That Jazz and Star 80 for Bob Fosse. Mr. Heim also received an Oscar nomination for editing on Sidney Lumet’s Network and an Emmy Award for the TV Mini-Series “Holocaust.”

“My film career started early on the projection squad at P.S. 20 in The Bronx, but my discovery of the Film Institute gave my interests a focus and led directly to my career,” Mr. Heim said, reflecting on the impact CCNY had on his life.

In addition editing features, Heim is the President of The American Cinema Editors (A.C.E.) and recently produced The Cutting Edge, a well-received documentary about the art of editing.

The Friday evening program begins at 6 p.m. and the Saturday screenings begin at 12 noon.  The DGA Theater is located at 110 West 57th St.  Admission each day is $5.00.  Tickets will be available at the door.