'Superman' Added To National Film Registry

Superman has officially been named as one of the film’s selected to join the National Film Registry of the Library of Congress in 2017.

Superman, the 1978 film directed by Richard Donner and starring Christopher Reeve, is one of 25 films chosen for their cultural, history, and/or aesthetic importance. The list also includes The Goonies, another film directed by Donner.

“I thank the National Film Registry for choosing Superman: The Movie and The Goonies as films to be treasured,” Donner said in a statement. “They are both special films in my life, as was the cast and crew for both. It’s wonderful to see them listed among so many great films.”

Here is the National Registry’s statement explaining its selection of Superman:

Director Richard Donner’s treatment of the famous superhero was not the first time the character had been on the big screen. Kirk Alyn played the role back in a 1948 serial and George Reeves appeared in both theatrical and TV versions in the 1950s. However, for many, Christopher Reeve remains the definitive Man of Steel. This film, an “origins” story, recounts Superman’s journey to Earth as a boy, his move from Smallville to Metropolis and his emergence as a true American hero. Beautiful in its sweep, score and special effects, which create a sense of awe and wonder, “Superman” — as the tag line reads — makes you “believe a man can fly.”

“The selection of a film to the National Film Registry recognizes its importance to American cinema and the nation’s cultural and historical heritage,” Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden said today in the announcement. “Our love affair with motion pictures is a testament to their enduring power to enlighten, inspire and inform us as individuals and a nation as a whole. Being tasked with selecting only 25 each year is daunting because there are so many great films deserving of this honor.”

Other films selected for the National Registry this year include:

“The 1939 aviation adventure starring Cary Grant, “Only Angels Have Wings”; Elia Kazan’s 1947 study of anti-Semitism, “Gentleman’s Agreement”; Stanley Kramer’s 1967 groundbreaking drama “Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner,” featuring powerhouse performances by Katharine Hepburn, Spencer Tracy and Sidney Poitier; Yvonne Rainer’s 1972 experimental film “Lives of Performers”; the Steven Spielberg-executive produced 1985 adventure “The Goonies”; the 1989 inspirational fantasy “Field of Dreams,” starring Kevin Costner; “Titanic,” James Cameron’s 1997 blockbuster about the great maritime disaster; Christopher Nolan’s 2000 breakthrough thriller “Memento”; two very different films starring Kirk Douglas, the historical epic “Spartacus” and the film noir “Ace in the Hole”; and the 1978 version of the quintessential superhero, “Superman,” directed by Richard Donner, who also was the director of “The Goonies.”

Turner Classic Movies (TCM) will tonight show a selection of movies named to the registry this year beginning at 8 p.m. E.T. The Librarian will be joined by critic Leonard Maltin to discuss the films.

Superman: The Movie (1978)1978

Superman: The Movie (1978) movie poster image

Superman: The Movie (1978)1978

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