Family Cinema was formally dedicated and celebrated Nov. 17 with the family.
Goldsmith Family Cinema Dedicated Nov. 17
When he was student at Wesleyan University, John
Goldsmith envisioned his college having premier facilities for the
burgeoning film studies major. On Nov. 17, Goldsmith returned to Wesleyan
with his family to dedicate the Goldsmith Family Cinema, which is housed in
the new, award-winning film studies building on Wesleyan's campus.
is just the latest addition to a long-standing labor of love in honor of
Jeanine Basinger and the film studies program," says Goldsmith, the CEO of
Metropolis, a Los Angeles-based talent firm that represents artists and
writers working in animation. Goldsmith is also president of Metropolis
Productions, a production company that creates innovative animated
television series and commercials.
"John was an outstanding film major, smart, hard-working, and totally
committed," says Jeanine Basinger, Corwin-Fuller professor of film studies
and chair of the Film Studies Department. "One thing that stood out about
him was his concern for the future of our major. Even as an undergraduate he
was looking ahead, planning, and helping shape what would come after him."
The naming of the cinema came through a generous gift from the Goldsmith
"The Goldsmith family--John, his mother, and brother and sister--were the
first people to provide tangible support for the Cinema Archives at
Wesleyan," Basinger says. "It all started with them. Over the years, we've
become close friends."
Wesleyan's Cinema Archives currently reside in a wood-framed house on
Washington Terrace, a formerly free-standing building which has been
incorporated into the opulent new film studies building. The construction of
an expanded, state-of-the-art cinema archives building will soon begin.
In many ways, the Goldsmith Family Cinema is the centerpiece of the new film
studies building, which in 2004 won a prestigious citation by the American
Institute of Architects (AIA).
The Goldsmith Family Cinema is one of the best-equipped and designed film
viewing spaces on the east coast, if not the entire country. The screening
room contains projectors that can show 16 mm, 35 mm and 70mm films, as well
as variable speed projectors essential for viewing silent films. There is
also equipment to screen a variety of digital formats, including VHS and
Digi-Beta video All formats are presented in the best possible light and
sound with impeccable sightlines.
While providing an ideal space for film viewing, the cinema is also
specifically designed to accommodate the active study and discussion of
film. A podium is equipped to permit speakers to control sound, lighting,
microphones, and the screen curtains. Also there is an integrated computer
panel to permit the use of peripheral equipment such as laptop computers and
The events on Nov. 17 will included a private dinner with the Goldsmith
family, Basinger, members of the film studies department, and invited guests
including Wesleyan Trustees. At 8 p.m. the Goldsmith Family Cinema was formally dedicated and celebrated with a brief ceremony followed by a
screening of the classic Buster Keaton silent film "Sherlock JR" with live
"Inaugurating the cinema with a film like this, is so much fun,"
Goldsmith says, his voice filled with enthusiasm. "I really loved the time I
spent as a student at Wesleyan, and my family and I have so much respect for
Jeanine and what she has accomplished here."
By David Pesci, director of Media Relations.
Photo by Olivia Bartlett, Wesleyan Connection editor