Lost film

lostsurviveslost filmsconsidered lostdestroyedmissingNo prints are known to exist lostbeen lostfilm
A lost film is a feature or short film that is no longer known to exist in any studio archives, private collections, or public archives, such as the U.S.wikipedia
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Silent film

silentsilent erasilent films
Of American silent films, far more have been lost than have survived, and of American sound films made from 1927 to 1950, perhaps half have been lost.
Most early motion pictures are considered lost because the nitrate film used in that era was extremely unstable and flammable.

1937 Fox vault fire

1937 fire1937 Fox Studios vault fire1937 New Jersey vault fire
For example, a storage vault fire in 1937 destroyed all the original negatives of Fox Pictures' pre-1935 films.
One death and two injuries resulted from the fire, which also destroyed all of the archived film in the vaults, resulting in the complete loss of most of the silent films produced by Fox Film Corporation before 1932.

The Film Foundation

Film FoundationThe Film Foundation’s
Martin Scorsese's Film Foundation estimates that more than 90% of American films made before 1929 are lost, and the Library of Congress estimates that 75% of all silent films are lost forever.
More than half of all films made before 1950 have been lost, and a mere 10% of those produced in the US prior to 1929 survive.

London After Midnight (film)

London After MidnightLondon After Midnight'' (film)
In some cases, such as London After Midnight, the surviving coverage is so extensive that an entire lost film can be reconstructed scene by scene in the form of still photographs.
The last copy of the film known to exist was destroyed in the 1965 MGM vault fire, making London After Midnight one of the most famous and eagerly sought after of all lost films.

Theda Bara

Lori Bara
A high-profile example is the case of Theda Bara.
Bara made more than 40 films between 1914 and 1926, but most were lost in the 1937 Fox vault fire.

Valeska Suratt

Valeska Surrat
This is preferable to the fate of the stage actress and Bara rival Valeska Suratt, whose entire film career has been lost.
Over the course of her career, Surratt appeared in 11 silent films all of which are now lost.

Sherlock Holmes (1922 film)

Sherlock Holmes1922filmed in 1922
For example, the 1922 film Sherlock Holmes was eventually discovered, but some of the footage is still missing.
The film was considered lost for decades, but was rediscovered in the mid-1970s and restored by George Eastman House.

A Woman of the Sea

The exceptions are A Woman of the Sea (which he destroyed himself as a tax writeoff) and one of his early Keystone films, Her Friend the Bandit (see Unknown Chaplin). The filmography of D. W. Griffith is nearly complete, as many of his early Biograph films were deposited by the company in paper print form at the Library of Congress.
The now lost film starred Edna Purviance, Raymond Bloomer, Eve Southern and Charles French, and was directed by Josef von Sternberg.

Film preservation

restorationrestoredfilm restoration
Pickford, Chaplin, Harold Lloyd, and Cecil B. DeMille were early champions of film preservation, though Lloyd lost a good number of his silent works in a vault fire in the early 1940s.
90 percent of all American silent films made before 1929 and 50 percent of American sound films made before 1950 are lost films.

Her Friend the Bandit

The exceptions are A Woman of the Sea (which he destroyed himself as a tax writeoff) and one of his early Keystone films, Her Friend the Bandit (see Unknown Chaplin). The filmography of D. W. Griffith is nearly complete, as many of his early Biograph films were deposited by the company in paper print form at the Library of Congress.
Her Friend the Bandit and A Woman of the Sea are Chaplin's lost films, as no copy is known to exist.

List of early color feature films

all-colour feature filmcolor featuresfull-colour feature film
Sometimes, only certain aspects of films may be lost. Early color films such as Lucien Hubbard's The Mysterious Island and John G. Adolfi's The Show of Shows exist only partially or not at all in color because the copies that were made of the film that exist were created on black-and-white stock. (See List of early color feature films.)
About a third of the films are thought to be lost films, with no prints surviving.

The Man from Blankley's

Conversely, and more commonly, some early sound films survive only as sets of soundtrack discs, with the picture elements completely missing (e.g., 1930's The Man from Blankley's, starring John Barrymore) or surviving only in fragmentary form (e.g., Gold Diggers of Broadway (1929) and The Rogue Song (1930), two highly popular and profitable early musicals in two-color Technicolor).
The Man from Blankley's is a lost 1930 American pre-Code comedy film, directed by Alfred E. Green.

Take It Out in Trade: The Outtakes

Ed Wood's 1972 film, The Undergraduate, has been lost. Wood's 1971 film Necromania was believed lost for years, until an edited version resurfaced at a yard sale in 1992, followed by a complete unedited print in 2001. A complete print of the previously lost Wood pornographic film The Young Marrieds was discovered in 2004. His 1970 film Take It Out In Trade was thought to exist only in fragments without sound, released on home video as Take It Out in Trade: The Outtakes in 1995, until the release of a scanned 16mm theatrical print on Blu-ray in 2018.
Long (though disputedly ) believed to be a lost film, three cans of outtake footage were found in the projection booth of a Santa Monica movie theatre and released on VHS by Something Weird Video in 1995 as Take It Out in Trade: The Outtakes.

Big and Little Wong Tin Bar

Some of Jackie Chan and Sammo Hung's first roles, including Big and Little Wong Tin Bar, was considered lost until a 2016 discovery and re-release.
Until 2016, the film was considered lost.

Gold Diggers of Broadway

Conversely, and more commonly, some early sound films survive only as sets of soundtrack discs, with the picture elements completely missing (e.g., 1930's The Man from Blankley's, starring John Barrymore) or surviving only in fragmentary form (e.g., Gold Diggers of Broadway (1929) and The Rogue Song (1930), two highly popular and profitable early musicals in two-color Technicolor).
Based on the 1919 play The Gold Diggers – which was also turned into a silent film of the same name in 1923 — now lost, Gold Diggers of Broadway utilized Technicolor, showgirls, and sound as its main selling points.

Teuvo Tulio

The first three films of noted Finnish melodrama actor and director Teuvo Tulio were lost, along with several other films that were of interest at least for historians of Finnish cinema, when the film depository of the company Adams Filmi burned down in Helsinki in 1959.
Altogether, Tulio directed 15 feature films, three of which were destroyed in a fire in 1959.

Gloria Swanson

Crown Theatre with Gloria SwansonGloriaGloria Le Bailly de La Falaise
Beyond the Rocks (1922) with Gloria Swanson and Rudolph Valentino was considered a lost film for several decades.
(Long believed to be a lost film, Beyond the Rocks was rediscovered in 2004 in a private collection in The Netherlands and is now available on DVD.) Swanson continued to make costume drama films for the next few years.

Andy Milligan

Most of Andy Milligan's early films are considered lost.
Most of Milligan's early works are currently considered lost films.

John Barrymore

JohnJack BarrymoreJohn and Elaine Barrymore
Conversely, and more commonly, some early sound films survive only as sets of soundtrack discs, with the picture elements completely missing (e.g., 1930's The Man from Blankley's, starring John Barrymore) or surviving only in fragmentary form (e.g., Gold Diggers of Broadway (1929) and The Rogue Song (1930), two highly popular and profitable early musicals in two-color Technicolor).
The films were produced by the Philadelphia-based Lubin Manufacturing Company and were lost in an explosion and fire at the Lubin vaults in 1914.

Beyond the Rocks (film)

Beyond the Rocks1922 silent filmsilent film that was released in 1922
Beyond the Rocks (1922) with Gloria Swanson and Rudolph Valentino was considered a lost film for several decades.
Beyond the Rocks was long considered lost but a nitrate print of the film was discovered in the Netherlands in 2003.

Rudolph Valentino

Valentino Rudolph Valentino Rodolfo Valentino
Beyond the Rocks (1922) with Gloria Swanson and Rudolph Valentino was considered a lost film for several decades.
Years after its release, Beyond the Rocks was thought to be lost, save for a one-minute portion.

Their First Misunderstanding

In 2013, an early Mary Pickford film, Their First Misunderstanding, notable for being the first film in which she was credited by name, was found in a New Hampshire barn and donated to Keene State College.
Their First Misunderstanding was believed to be a lost film until a copy was discovered in a barn in New Hampshire in 2006.

Winner Take All (1932 film)

Winner Take AllWinner Take All'' (1932 film)Winner Takes All
The James Cagney film Winner Take All (1932) used scenes from the early talkie Queen of the Night Clubs (1929) starring Texas Guinan.
The movie also featured a single scene of George Raft conducting a band that had been lifted from Queen of the Nightclubs, an earlier film and lost film.

The Cage (Star Trek: The Original Series)

The CageTalosiana pilot episode
The Cage, the original 1964 pilot film for Star Trek, survived only in a black-and-white print until 1987, when a film archivist found an unmarked (mute) 35mm reel in a Hollywood film laboratory with the negative trims of the unused scenes.
The process of editing the pilot into "The Menagerie" disassembled the original camera negative of "The Cage", and thus, for many years it was considered partly lost.

List of lost films

Lost filmNo copy of that film exists today
List of lost films
For this list of lost films, a lost film is defined as one of which no part of a print is known to have survived.