Lutheran Film Associates

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See LFA 0/4 Administrative History.

From the description of Transcript c. 1968 (Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library). WorldCat record id: 60361319

See LFA 0/8 Administrative History

From the description of Publicity Program Files 1951-1960; 1952-1956 (Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library). WorldCat record id: 60361326

From the description of Correspondence 1950-1962 (Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library). WorldCat record id: 60361322

From the description of Research Drawings and Artwork n.d. (Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library). WorldCat record id: 60361575

From the description of Negatives, World Premiere 1953 (Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library). WorldCat record id: 60361330

Lutheran Film Associates assumed the assets and rights of both Lutheran Church Productions, Inc. and LFA Productions, Inc. upon their dissolution in 1965. Lutheran Film Associates was faced with further change in 1967 when the Lutheran Council in the USA was created. LFA decided to merge into the LCUSA Department of Films and operated within the framework and procedures of the Lutheran Council. Yet Lutheran Film Associates was able to maintain its independent corporate status. An administrative agreement was established in 1972, whereby LCUSA became the service agency for LFA. The Trustees voted to keep Lutheran Film Associates a separate incorporated agency beyond the breakup of LCUSA in 1986.

From the description of Lutheran Film Associates Minutes, Agendas, Exhibits, 1950- (Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library). WorldCat record id: 25355461

From the description of Lutheran Film Associates Minutes, Agendas, Exhibits, 1950- [microform]. (Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library). WorldCat record id: 46895415

See LFA 0/10 Administrative History.

From the description of Negatives n.d. (Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library). WorldCat record id: 60361576

From the description of Records 1950-1977 (Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library). WorldCat record id: 60361332

See LFA Administrative History.

From the description of Production Files 1980-1995; 1983-1985 (Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library). WorldCat record id: 60363316

See LFA 0/8 Administrative History.

From the description of Television Release Correspondence, Agreements, Press Releases 1928-1963; 1953-1960 (Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library). WorldCat record id: 60361328

From the description of Auditor's Reports 1953-1966 (Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library). WorldCat record id: 60361321

From the description of Legal Correspondence and Contracts 1951-1969; 1951-1957 (Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library). WorldCat record id: 60361323

From the description of Scripts 1951-1954 (Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library). WorldCat record id: 60361325

From the description of Foreign Distribution Correspondence, Agreements 1953-1968; 1954-1959 (Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library). WorldCat record id: 60361327

From the description of Phtographs c.1953 (Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library). WorldCat record id: 60361329

See LFA Administrative History

From the description of Records 1951-2004; 1951-1997 (Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library). WorldCat record id: 60361335

See LFA 0/1 Administrative History.

From the description of Scrapbook and Awards 1961 (Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library). WorldCat record id: 60361316

See LFA 0/7 Administrative History.

From the description of Records 1954-1996 (Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library). WorldCat record id: 60361320

See LFA 0/2 Administrative History.

From the description of Transcript 1967. (Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library). WorldCat record id: 60361457

From the description of Photographs and Negatives c.1966 (Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library). WorldCat record id: 60361317

See LFA 0/10 Administrative History

From the description of Photographs 1966 (Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library). WorldCat record id: 60361458

The history of the Lutheran Film Associates (LFA) production, ACTS, differs from that of previous films in that it reached the stages of a nearly finished product only to be shelved for lack of interest by commercial distributors and, to some church leaders, a perceived controversial quality about certain subject matter presented in the film. ACTS was a project that began as an idea for a film that would exemplify the theme of the 450th Anniversary of the Protestant Reformation, ʺLife - New Life.ʺ A United Methodist church in Greenwich Village in New York City, Washington Square Church, served as the backdrop against which the film portrayed the activities of the Rev. Finley Schaef, the churchʹs pastor, and Eugene Lion, a writer by profession who served as an arts consultant to the church. The film follows these two men as they minister to a variety of people who have in common being outside of the church or society in general, but are searching for answers to life questions and using religion to help them on their journey to find answers.

The purpose of film was to help people gain insight into how to live their lives better when love, grace, faith, and forgiveness played a central role in how they treated people in everyday encounters and situations. The ʺLife-New Lifeʺ as theme of the film meant that the filmʹs message represented life with revitalized meaning. Robert E.A. Lee of LFA and executive producer for this project stated that, ʺWhen man discovers that his life has worth and meaning and a purpose related to Godʹs will for the world, he discovers who he really is as a human being.ʺ

Aid Association for Lutherans (AAL) initially invited LFA to develop a film proposal that AAL could finance and that would contribute to the Lutheran churchʹs public witness through mass media. LFA spent a considerable amount of time researching possible themes, cinematic styles, and story lines, before deciding on the cinema verite style and a story that would reflect the ʺLife - New Lifeʺ theme. It hired William Jersey, first as a consultant for the project, but eventually also as its producer, director, photographer, and first editor. Kathy Collins researched possible storylines for the project and was charged with finding the most interesting people who lived the ʺLife-New Lifeʺ concept, that is, people involved in a quest to re-energize the meaning of their lives as they made their way in the world. Her research came across an article that appeared in the newspaper, The Village Voice about Washington Square Church. She compiled additional information on the ministry of the church and personality profiles of its principal staff.

AAL and LFA created a ʺbill of particularsʺ that delineated a pattern of procedure for development of a film concept. The bill provided for a consulting committee that would review and comment on early research. Given the variety of research material discovered, the committee believed it would not be possible to make a decision about a storyline without preliminary screen tests. It proposed that LFA ask William Jersey and his production company for a complete story outline and production proposal. After the committee viewed preliminary filming of Washington Square Church, it decided to proceed with the church and its pastor and layperson staff as the main storyline and backdrop for the film.

AAL provided a grant of $250,000 to produce the film and an additional grant of $30,000 to use for promotion and distribution. It was stipulated that when revenues from the film reached $50,000, $20,000 of the second grant would be refunded to AAL. Filming began in May 1968 and included locations in and around Washington Square Church, Fire Island, New York, and in Detroit, Michigan, at an Episcopal church where Mr. Lion conducted a theatre workshop for young persons. There was no script and no actor portrayals. The process of editing the footage took more time than usual. The first cut was unsatisfactory and one year after filming began, an editor, Tom McDonaugh, was hired to edit the film so that it had the subjective point of view that was essential for the filmʹs meaning.

With filming completed in early 1969, LFA had hoped to have the film ready for release in early 1970. However, as of September 1969, arrangements for its distribution had not been made. As of December 1970, LFA had still been unsuccessful in finding a distributor for the film. There was also some ʺinternal pressureʺ in regards to releasing the film due to what was perceived as the filmʹs more controversial qualities. Most experts and distributors agreed that while the film was of overall good quality, they did not see it as a commercially viable product.

The decision was made to shelve the project. LFA returned unused grant money totaling approximately $9,000 to AAL, who expressed that they believed they would have no future interest in the project. LFA board action in 1987 authorized the ʺdisposition of the negative and other production elements of the films ACT[S] for educational purposes by having these materials offered without cost to any interested party such as a film school or independent producer provided that any use of the material will not include reference either to LFA or AAL on the credits.ʺ

From the description of Records 1965-1973 (Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library). WorldCat record id: 60363317

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
creatorOf Lutheran Council in the USA. Division of Public Relations. Dept. of Films. Standing Committee Minutes and Agenda, 1967-1972. Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library, ELCA Library
creatorOf Lutheran Film Associates. Records 1951-2004; 1951-1997 Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library, ELCA Library
creatorOf Lutheran Film Associates. Negatives n.d. Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library, ELCA Library
creatorOf Lutheran Film Associates. Phtographs c.1953 Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library, ELCA Library
referencedIn Archives of Cooperative Lutheranism (Lutheran Council in the USA). Lutheran films records, 1950-1986. Campbell University, Wiggins Memorial Library
creatorOf Lutheran Film Associates. Production Files 1980-1995; 1983-1985 Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library, ELCA Library
creatorOf Lutheran Film Associates. Scripts 1951-1954 Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library, ELCA Library
creatorOf LFA Productions. LFA Productions, Inc. Minutes, Agendas, Exhibits, 1959-1965 [microform]. Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library, ELCA Library
creatorOf Lutheran Film Associates. Auditor's Reports 1953-1966 Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library, ELCA Library
creatorOf Lutheran Council in the USA. Division of Public Relations. Dept. of Films. Standing Committee Minutes and Agenda 1967-1972 [microform]. Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library, ELCA Library
creatorOf Lutheran Film Associates. Records 1965-1973 Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library, ELCA Library
creatorOf Lutheran Film Associates. Legal Correspondence and Contracts 1951-1969; 1951-1957 Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library, ELCA Library
creatorOf Lutheran Film Associates. Publicity Program Files 1951-1960; 1952-1956 Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library, ELCA Library
creatorOf Lutheran Church Productions. Lutheran Church Productions Minutes, agendas, exhibits, 1950-1965. Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library, ELCA Library
creatorOf Lutheran Film Associates. Records 1954-1996 Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library, ELCA Library
creatorOf Lutheran Film Associates. Research Drawings and Artwork n.d. Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library, ELCA Library
creatorOf Lutheran Film Associates. Photographs 1966 Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library, ELCA Library
creatorOf Lutheran Council in the USA. Office of Business and Finance. Lutheran Council in the USA and American and Certain Common Agencies of the Member Churches Serviced by the Lutheran Council in the USA Financial Reports and Audits, 1978-1984. Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library, ELCA Library
creatorOf Lutheran Council in the USA. Office of Communication and Interpretation. Media Relations Unit. Administrative Files, 1955, 1962-1986. Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library, ELCA Library
creatorOf Lutheran Film Associates. Lutheran Film Associates Minutes, Agendas, Exhibits, 1950- Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library, ELCA Library
creatorOf LFA Productions. LFA Productions, Inc. Minutes, Agendas, Exhibits, 1959-1965. Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library, ELCA Library
creatorOf Lutheran Film Associates. Lutheran Film Associates Minutes, Agendas, Exhibits, 1950- [microform]. Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library, ELCA Library
creatorOf Lutheran Film Associates. Transcript c. 1968 Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library, ELCA Library
creatorOf Lutheran Film Associates. Records 1950-1977 Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library, ELCA Library
creatorOf Lutheran Film Associates. Scrapbook and Awards 1961 Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library, ELCA Library
creatorOf Lutheran Film Associates. Correspondence 1950-1962 Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library, ELCA Library
creatorOf Lutheran Film Associates. Negatives, World Premiere 1953 Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library, ELCA Library
creatorOf Lutheran Film Associates. Transcript 1967. Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library, ELCA Library
creatorOf Lutheran Film Associates. Photographs and Negatives c.1966 Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library, ELCA Library
creatorOf Lutheran Film Associates. Foreign Distribution Correspondence, Agreements 1953-1968; 1954-1959 Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library, ELCA Library
creatorOf Lutheran Church Productions. Lutheran Church Productions Minutes, agendas, exhibits, 1950-1965 [microform]. Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library, ELCA Library
creatorOf Lutheran Film Associates. Television Release Correspondence, Agreements, Press Releases 1928-1963; 1953-1960 Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Library, ELCA Library
Role Title Holding Repository
Relation Name
associatedWith Archives of Cooperative Lutheranism (Lutheran Council in the USA). corporateBody
associatedWith Bach, Johann Sebastian, 1685-1750 person
associatedWith Boyle, Eugene, J. person
associatedWith Burchfield, Charles Ephraim, 1893-1967. person
associatedWith Curt Oertel Film Studiengesellschaft M.B.H. corporateBody
associatedWith Curt Oertel Film Studiengesellschaft M.B.H. corporateBody
associatedWith Curt Oertel Film Studiengesellschaft M.B.H. corporateBody
associatedWith Empie, Paul C. person
associatedWith Endress, Henry person
associatedWith Hidy, Ross. person
associatedWith Jensen, Walter A., 1917- person
associatedWith Knutson, Kent. person
associatedWith Kuralt, Charles, 1934-1997. person
associatedWith Lee, Robert E.A., 1921- person
associatedWith LFA Productions. corporateBody
associatedWith LFA Productions. corporateBody
associatedWith LFA Productions. corporateBody
associatedWith LFA Productions. corporateBody
associatedWith LFA Productions, Inc. corporateBody
associatedWith Lutheran Church Productions. corporateBody
associatedWith Lutheran Church Productions. corporateBody
associatedWith Lutheran Church Productions. corporateBody
associatedWith Lutheran Church Productions. corporateBody
associatedWith Lutheran Church Productions, Inc. corporateBody
associatedWith Lutheran Church Productions, Inc. corporateBody
associatedWith Lutheran Church Productions, Inc. corporateBody
associatedWith Lutheran Church Productions, Inc. corporateBody
associatedWith Lutheran Church Productions, Inc. corporateBody
associatedWith Lutheran Church Productions, Inc. corporateBody
associatedWith Lutheran Church Productions, Inc. corporateBody
associatedWith Lutheran Church Productions, Inc. corporateBody
associatedWith Lutheran Church Productions, Inc. corporateBody
associatedWith Lutheran Church Productions, Inc. corporateBody
associatedWith Lutheran Church Productions, Inc. corporateBody
associatedWith Lutheran Church Productions, Inc. corporateBody
associatedWith Lutheran Church Productions, Inc. corporateBody
associatedWith Lutheran Church Productions, Inc. corporateBody
associatedWith Lutheran Council in the USA. corporateBody
associatedWith Lutheran Council in the USA. Division of Public Relations. Dept. of Films. corporateBody
associatedWith Lutheran Council in the USA. Division of Public Relations. Dept. of Films. corporateBody
associatedWith Lutheran Council in the USA. Office of Business and Finance. corporateBody
associatedWith Lutheran Council in the USA. Office of Communication and Interpretation. Media Relations Unit. corporateBody
associatedWith Lutheran Film Associates. Administrative Committee. corporateBody
associatedWith Lutheran Film Associates. Administrative Committee. corporateBody
associatedWith Lutheran Film Associates. Board of Directors. corporateBody
associatedWith Lutheran Film Associates. Board of Directors. corporateBody
associatedWith Lutheran Film Associates. Board of Trustees. corporateBody
associatedWith Lutheran Film Associates. Board of Trustees. corporateBody
associatedWith Lutheran Film Associates. Distribution Committee. corporateBody
associatedWith Lutheran Film Associates. Distribution Committee. corporateBody
associatedWith Lutheran Film Associates. Executive Committee. corporateBody
associatedWith Lutheran Film Associates. Executive Committee. corporateBody
associatedWith Lutheran Film Associates. Script Committee. corporateBody
associatedWith Lutheran Film Associates. Script Committee. corporateBody
associatedWith Luther-film G.m.b.H corporateBody
associatedWith Luther, Martin, 1483-1546. person
associatedWith McDonald, James I. H.(James Ian Hamilton) person
associatedWith McDonald, Nancy. person
Place Name Admin Code Country
United States
United States
United States
United States
Nebraska--Omaha
Germany
United States
Germany
Germany
Nebraska--Omaha
Germany
Germany (East)
United States
Germany
Germany
Germany
United States
United States
United States
United States
United States
United States
United States
Germany
Germany
Germany (East)
Germany
Germany
Germany
United States
United States
United States
Nebraska--Omaha
Germany
Germany
Germany
Subject
Motion pictures--Distribution
Biographical films
Documentary films--Production and direction
Documentary television programs
Music appreciation
Omaha (Neb.)--Race relations
Race relations--Religious aspects--Christianity
Motion picture plays
Motion pictures in church work
Painters
Motion pictures--Production and direction--photographs
Interfaith marriage
Marriage--Lutheran Church
Historical films
Painting--Technique
Watercolorists--Biography
Church and state
Motion picture film--photographs
Documentary television programs--Production and direction
Music--Interpretation (Phrasing, dynamics, etc.)
Advertising--Motion pictures
Documentary films
Liberty of conscience
Motion pictures
Composers--Biography
Television broadcasting--Religious aspects--Lutheran Church
Music--Performance
Painting, American--20th century
Motion picture industry--Finance
Marriage--Catholic Church
Motion pictures--Production and direction
Television in religion
Motion pictures--Religious Aspects--Methodist Church
Religious films
Motion pictures--Religious aspects--Lutheran Church
Occupation
Function

Corporate Body

Active 1954

Active 1996

English,

German

Information

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