17th Annual Ozark Foothills FilmFest Opening Night Event at the Melba – The Restored 1925 Film THE LOST WORLD April 19th!

17th Annual Ozark Foothills FilmFest Opening Night Event
The Restored 1925 Film THE LOST WORLD
With Music Accompaniment by the Lyon College Jazz Band

The 17th Annual Ozark Foothills FilmFest is planning a truly unique Opening Night event, a screening of the 1925 silent film THE LOST WORLD accompanied by the Lyon College Jazz Band performing an original score composed for the screening. The screening/performance will take place on Thursday, April 19 at 7:00 PM at the Melba Theater, 115 West Main Street in Batesville.

Before the advent of sound films in 1927, commercial films were accompanied by live music. From the neighborhood nickelodeons where player pianos churned out popular favorites to the glittering movie palaces where large orchestras accompanied the images, audiences were treated to a live music soundtrack when they went “to the movies.” This year’s Ozark Foothills FilmFest will revisit that historical period with a screening of a restored version of the first dinosaur-oriented film sensation, THE LOST WORLD, based on a novella by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.

The film follows Professor Challenger who believes that prehistoric creatures are alive and flourishing in the Amazon jungle. He mounts an expedition to prove his point, enlisting the aid of journalist Edward Malone who convinces his newspaper to fund the journey. Paula White hopes to find her father, a missing explorer. They and others undertake the voyage and witness dinosaurs and humanoids doing battle in a magnificent landscape.

A worldwide sensation when it opened in 1925, the original version of the film was eventually lost when the arrival of sound films made silent movies obsolete. With the cooperation of the Czech Republic and private collectors in Europe and America, eight original source prints were located and digitally remastered to clean the images and minimize scratches and other abrasions. The painstakingly restored version of the movie will open the 17th Annual Ozark Foothills FilmFest, with live music accompaniment by members of the Lyon College Jazz Band from an original score composed for the screening. Jazz Band members Taylor Hartwig, Raygan Adamson and Charlie Fancyboy and band director Montgomery Hill will perform the score.

Tickets for the event are $7; $6 for adults age 55+ and students. They may be purchased in advance at the Melba Theater box office or by calling 870-251-1189. The complete schedule for the 2018 FilmFest is available at www.ozarkfoothillsfilmfest.org.

Opening Night sponsors are First Community Bank, Lyon College, and the Melba Theater. The National Endowment for the Arts and numerous local businesses support the five day festival; a complete listing is available at www.ozarkfoothillsfilmfest.org/sponsors.


The attached film still is in the public domain because it was published in the U.S. between 1923 and 1963 and was either never copyrighted or the copyright was not renewed.

Ginger Smith joined OGTC in 2014 as a volunteer, and has lived in this area since 1972 when she moved to be near her parents, the late Doss and Vivian Burgess. Her late father was Independence County Appraiser and any time family, whether kids or grand kids, came to visit for even a short time, he would take them to A.D. Hill’s grocery store, and get them a soda pop and candy bar, see the talking bird there, and end up “checking out the great White River.” All the kids and grands have played on the banks there, picnicked, and played on the old train. Ginger is adamant, since she moved to Batesville, there is just no other place to raise a family. Her love for the area and desire to help promote it in her professional capacity led her to seek volunteering, and Charlie Morris, whom she met when she was a typesetter at the Daily Guard Newspaper, put her in touch with Cathy Drew, Executor Director of OGTC. She has been on board since then and says she has loved everything she has done and is proud to represent North Central Arkansas.
The last 20 years of her employment she worked for the late County Judge David Wyatt, West Elementary School Principal Jerry Harris, and Circuit Clerk Claudia Nobles and Judge John Kemp. At the Guard Office she says she made friends for a life time, and then the West Elementary teachers, students, and their families grew close to her forever. Her last job she was hired in a newly created position to collect felony fines and restitution. She was so proud that after three years she more than tripled the annual revenues that she retired! Her part-time retirement job was with the ortho docs, Drs. Allen and Angel where she also met many people from all over the area, and made another set of new friends! She is a published writer and has also written feature articles for the Batesville Guard TV Guide and the Arkansas Democrat Gazette.
She has a daughter, Misty Long Sparks, son-in-law Dloyd Sparks, and three grands, Dalton Lee, Victoria Lynn and Anna Rose, who own her heart, and three more heartbeat grands, Nico and Corbin of Washington, and a late granddaughter, Ginger Savannah. Her late husband, Ken Smith, was the Batesville Postmaster.
Totally retired now, Ginger offers her time and writing abilities to OGTC as she travels around the state and visits with so many nice folks, writes reviews, and tries to be a worthy representative for Ozark Gateway Tourism. She is a people person who really cares for all God has blessed us with in our beautiful state of Arkansas in the United States of America.