The tragic murder of 2004 Fellow Helen Hill, which took place in New Orleans at the beginning of the year, has inspired memorial screenings, filmmaking awards and press coverage. All these tributes attest to the effect Helen’s work and life has had on those who knew her and her films.

For those who wish to read more about this dearly missed artist, Jason Berry’s recent article for the Harvard alumni magazine 02138, provides an extensive and intimate portrait of Helen.

In order for more audiences to experience Helen’s playful and poignant animation, the Harvard Film Archive created new 16mm prints of ten of her films. These shorts have been shown as special presentations at the Images Festival, Ann Arbor Film Festival, Madcat Women’s International Film Festival and Ottowa’s International Animation Festival. Upcoming screenings will be held in Los Angeles at the Redcat Theater, and in New York City at Anthology Film Archives. Groups and festivals interested in screening the films can contact:

Mark Johnson, HFA Film Trafficker
mhjohn (at) fas (dot) harvard (dot) edu
(617) 496-8438

While it is difficult to reconcile one’s emotions with such a senseless tragedy, it is comforting to know that Helen’s passion will continue in new vessels, through awards for filmmakers. The Film Studies Program at the University of South Carolina, the Nickelodeon Theatre of Columbia, South Carolina, and New York University’s Department of Cinema Studies have established the Helen Hill Award to enable a filmmaker to attend the 6th Orphan Film Symposium, in March, in New York City. The Linda Joy Media Arts Society has also inaugurated the Helen Hill Animated Award, to recognize animators in Canada’s Atlantic Provinces.

Further information and ways to pay tribute can be found on www.helenhill.org/news.