BFI Southbank to hold an exhibition on Powell and Pressburger’s film The Red Shoes with Beyond The Mirror
75 years after the release of ‘The Red Shoes,’ the cinematic work of Powell and Pressburger forms BFI’s new exhibition “The Red Shoes: Beyond The Mirror.”
Cinema Unbound: The Creative Worlds of Powell + Pressburger is a significant celebration of the enduring partnership between Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger, two of the greatest filmmakers in history. The BFI is presenting a retrospective of their works, which will be available at BFI Southbank and cinemas across the UK until December 31, 2023.
Part of the ongoing celebrations includes an upcoming exhibition that focuses specifically on the famous 1948 drama The Red Shoes. The movie starred legendary actors such as Moira Shearer, Anton Walbrook, and Marius Goring, with the exhibition, "The Red Shoes: Beyond The Mirror", to take place at BFI Southbank. It follows the personal journey of 21-year-old Moira Shearer during the production of the film. The exhibition features around 100 unseen costumes and production designs, treatments, scripts, behind-the-scenes photographs, and posters; all of which materials preserved by the BFI National Archive.
As part of the exhibition, the BFI will display various items including the famous red ballet shoes seen in the film, which are on loan from the Martin Scorsese Collection. Additionally, there will be personal belongings from Moira Shearer's family estate, costumes and props from Matthew Bourne's ballet adaptation, and projections “that will bring the film to life in a mesmerizing way”.
The Red Shoes: Beyond the Mirror exhibition has been made possible due to generous support from the BFI Philanthropy Powell & Pressburger Consortium and Old Possum’s Practical Trust. Additional support has been provided by Gladys Krieble Delmas Foundation, Thriplow Charitable Trust and Idlewild Charitable Trust.
Who were Powell and Pressburger?
Michael Powell and Emeric Pressburger, collectively known as The Archers, were a highly successful and influential British filmmaking duo. They collaborated closely on a series of groundbreaking films during the 1940s and 1950s, leaving a profound impact on the world of cinema. Together, they created a distinct cinematic style characterized by innovative storytelling, technical brilliance, and thematic depth.
Their collaboration produced a series of memorable films, including the aforementioned The Red Shoes and Black Narcissus in 1947, which are celebrated for their visual artistry, emotional resonance, and narrative complexity. The legacy of Powell and Pressburger continues to inspire and influence filmmakers worldwide, solidifying their place as pioneering figures in the history of British and international cinema.
The BFI have, in preparation for the celebrations, created a beginner's guide to getting to grips with the filmmakers, including a comprehensive look at their filmography.
When does The Red Shoes: Beyond The Mirror take place?
“The Red Shoes: Beyond the Mirror” runs from November 10 - January 7. For more information and booking details, you can visit the BFI’s website.