Linotype: The Film is a documentary about the Linotype typecasting machine and its search for a place amongst modern technology.
UPDATE: We have exceeded our goal! Thank you to everyone that has supported the project! All pledges over our goal will still go directly to the making of the film.
Our Kickstarter goal was set for just covering our bare expenses to capture the stories, but there is a massive amount of post-production expenses that we will incur (color correction, mastering DVDs, etc.) after we finish production. Your support will allow us to make this an even better film.
Click here for our video Thank You.
History of the Linotype
In 1886 a German watchmaker named Ottmar Mergenthaler changed the world by inventing the Linotype machine. Called “The Eighth Wonder of the World" by Thomas Edison, the Linotype revolutionized printing and society.
Suddenly, newspapers could be printed daily, books could be produced faster and cheaper, and one typesetter could do the work of six men composing type by hand. The Linotype sparked an explosion in communication that can only be compared to the invention of the internet today.
Although these machines were revolutionary, new technology began to supersede the Linotype in the 1950s, and over the following decades they were scrapped and melted down by the thousands. Today, very few machines are still in existence.
The Linotype Today
The highly skilled operators of the Linotype are in a battle against time. If their skills are not passed along to a new generation of operators, the machine will die out completely. This stalwart group of former operators, historians, book printers, graphic designers, and concerned folks are doing everything they can to save the Linotype from the scrap yard.
Some see this as a fool’s errand, or as a hobby for those remembering their glory days. And some say it’s more than that...
About the Film
"Linotype: The Film" is about the history, lovers of, and future of this incredible machine that was once the lifeblood of printers all around the world.
This film is about a machine from the past, but that does not mean this is a sentimental fact-film lamenting the loss of a technology. We are compelled to dig deeper, and find what the Linotype has to say about the present and future.
To make this film, we have extensively researched and talked with experts to learn as much as possible about the history of the Linotype and how the machine works. We’ve been able to talk to numerous people in the Linotype community, from small town printers to typesetters for national publications.
So far, our interviews have included a librarian from Cambridge University, the former Linotype representative of Australia, and a former New York Times operator & preeminent historian on the Linotype.
This fall, we have shot in several midwestern locations and are planning both an east and west coast trip in early 2011. An overseas trip might be possible if we exceed our funding goal.
What the Money Funds
The money we are raising on Kickstarter is specifically for acquiring the pieces of the story. This includes travel expenses, archival footage, music and a little food on the road. There are at least five more shooting trips planned and our goal is to finish the film by fall of 2011.
Images of Rewards
For more information and to see more images, visit our website.
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