In 1991,days ahead of presenting Satyajit Ray the honorary Oscar award for Lifetime Achievement,television producers of the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences under took the task of gathering clips of his movies. During the process,they discovered that many of his movies were under threat. Masterprints of some were available in the US while among the rest,some were partially damaged.
Thus began a Satyajit Ray Preservation Project by the Academy Film Archive. Over the next two decades,18 feature films and one short by the filmmaker were preserved. On September 7 and 9,the Academy will showcase the restored version of the most celebrated creations by the auteur Apu Trilogy. The event,to be held at Samuel Goldwyn Theater,located at the Academys headquarters in California,will have Sharmila Tagore,one of lead actors of Apur Sansar,and Dilip Basu,founding director of the Satyajit Ray Film and Study Center Collection at the University of California,as special guests. For the restoration of the Apu Trilogy consisting of Pather Panchali,Aparajito and Apur Sansar the Academy worked in collaboration with the Merchant and Ivory Foundation and The Film Foundation.