A few months ago, Bridgeman Images launched an exciting new footage partnership with the MacKenzie Rough Archive.
The super 8mm and 16mm film collection is owned by filmmaker/producer and collector Ian Mackenzie Rough. This spans a growing assortment of vintage international travel, archival home movies, found footage and more.
Bridgeman now has premium access to roughly 400 films from Ian's collection, available directly on our website. With the new partnership stipulating that there are hundreds of more film offline/incoming to our archive.
We spoke with Ian to learn a bit more about his collection.
Regarding the conception of the archive, Ian stated:
"I retired to France in 2005 after running my own production company for 28 years in London, England (Tele-An Productions Ltd). After that, I started transferring my home moves to videotape by using a video camera and film projector. In time, I built my own telecine units including Super 8mm, 9.5mm, 16mm and 35mm. The first home movie that I transferred to the dining room table was my Mum & Dad starring in ‘The Man Who Ate Grass’. I was not happy about the quality, so I experimented with building a transfer unit of my own. From there, after transferring all my family’s movies, I started looking for more material and found that people on eBay (especially in France) were selling off home movies, and in most cases, they had no idea what was on the footage as they had no way of projecting it! I have found many gems this way!”
Ian’s upbringing was influential in his passion for film. In 1958, his father returned from a trip to the USA with a Kodak 8mm camera. As soon as Ian got his hands on this camera at the age of 9, he was instantly obsessed. After leaving school at 16, he started at Associated British-Pathe as a ‘Runner’ in the film dispatch department in London. Soon promoted to Projectionist, he worked for Warner Pathe; Associated British Picture Corporation; London Press Exchange Advertising and Lintas Advertising as Projectionist and Telecine Operator. After 9 years at McCann-Erickson Advertising, he formed Tele-An Productions Ltd.
This professional career was also integral to that appreciation for archiving.
“I used to shoot behind the scenes on TV Commercial productions and enjoyed this type of shoot very much (it’s a pity that I never got the chance to do this on feature productions)! I worked for a year with The Spice Girls. It was great fun. Here is just one of my productions."
Speaking to his use of technology and possibilities for the future:
Now in his 70s, Ian lives a quiet life in rural France with his family, his homemade scanners, two home cinemas, over 3000 films and a large collection of antique projectors. If he had to describe his archive in one sentence? “Unique Global Historical Footage."
Rough's collection of self-digitized films covers dozens of countries worldwide and over several decades throughout the 20th century. From the 1950s to the early 2000s, from Cuba to Sri Lanka, it represents an expansive, priceless collection that continues to grow.
Heavily featured in our 2022 DMLA “Hot Topics in Footage” presentation in light of the increase in demand for home movies and slice-of-life footage for usage within documentaries, Bridgeman Images is proud to have access to much of this unique collection to share with our clients and is excited to work with a significant personal archive of exotic locales, friendly faces and day-in-the-life snapshots showcasing one-of-a-kind moments throughout time.
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