Forgotten films are stars again

FILM BUFF: John Cohen's collection of cuttings and cinema show listings inspired his book on the golden age of cinema. (d26101158)
FILM BUFF: John Cohen's collection of cuttings and cinema show listings inspired his book on the golden age of cinema. (d26101158)
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“I HAVE discovered that people love lists,” writes John Cohen in the introduction to his book Lost Treasures Of The Odeons.

And the book contains lists that will delight film buffs – details of 3,018 lost or forgotten films that were main features on release but have never or very rarely been seen on terrestrial television.

John, of North Gate, Upper Hopton, spent his early years in Harrogate, but has lived in Mirfield for more than 40 years.

As a child he began keeping lists of film release dates and when they were shown on television.

Self-confessed “anorak” John said: “In those days there was only the BBC and RKO was the first company to sell to television. I started keeping a list and it has grown and grown”.

Eventually John, a retired English teacher, decided to share his lifetime’s interest with other film enthusiasts. The response to the first edition in 2007 was such that he has now published a much more thorough second edition.

For people of a certain age – this writer among them – the illustrated adverts in the book will bring back memories of the days before multiplexes, when main features were supported by B-movies and local newspapers carried these illustrated adverts.

Between the lists, John has included numerous informative and entertaining articles on different aspects of film and cinema.

Lost Treasures (price £25) is on sale at Dewsbury Minster, which will get a donation from every copy sold there. E-mail filmlists@hotmail.com for more details.