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Raj Roy To Head MoMA Film Department

Monday, May 7-----Rajendra Roy (known to his friends and colleagues as “Raj”) has been appointed as the Celeste Bartos Chief Curator of the Department of Film at the Museum of Modern Art, one of the most important and influential film archives in the world. Roy, who will begin his new post in July 2007, succeeds Mary Lea Bandy, who retired from the Museum in 2006.

Rajendra Roy brings to the Museum a breadth of experience that encompasses museum work as well as programming and management for important film festivals.  His broad involvement in the film community will be invaluable to the development of the Film Department’s programs, including acquisitions, exhibitions, research, and preservation”, Museum of Modern Art head Glen Lowry announced.

Roy will lead a staff of twenty, coordinating an annual program of diverse film exhibitions, which encompass approximately 700 titles per year and span the history of the art of the moving image beginning with the late nineteenth century. Annual film programs of films from Germany, Brazil and Canada, as well as the acclaimed New Directors/New Films series (presented in collaboration with the Film Society of Lincoln Center) have become New York cultural staples and a touchstone for examining all genres and forms of cinema, from classic and repertory to experimental and contemporary.

Roy is a respected and well liked member of the New York film community, having worked since 2002 as the Director of Programming and then Artistic Director of the Hamptons International Film Festival (HIFF). Under his curatorial reign, the Festival has grown into a major showcase for independent and international cinema. Roy will stay on as an unpaid artistic advisor for the upcoming Festival, to be held in October on the eastern end of Long Island. In the past few years, Roy has also served as the only American member of the international competition selection committee for the Berlin International Film Festival, recommending films and also participating as a moderator at panels and q+a discussions.

Prior to joining the HIFF, Roy worked at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in a variety of positions in the Film and Media Arts Program, collaborating on the launch of the museum’s first film programs in New York, Bilbao and Berlin. His Festival experience also includes serving as the Executive Director of the MIX Festival, one of the largest experimental film and video festivals in the world devoted to gay and lesbian works.

Taking the reins at MoMA is indeed a challenge and an opportunity for the film-loving Roy. “This is the professional opportunity of a life time”, Roy said in a prepared statement. “With the historical foundation of the Museum’s unparalleled film collection and archive, integrated with an active engagement with the spectrum of contemporary cinematic practice, I look forward to ensuring that the Department of Film continues to be a vital educational resource and source of inspiration for filmmakers, artists, and audiences worldwide.” Amen to that Raj. We look forward to great things.

Sandy Mandelberger, Film New York Editor

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Mandelberger Sandy
(International Media Resources)

The Ultimate Guide to the New York Film, Video and New Media Scene.

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