What is Domitor
DOMITOR, the international society for the study of early cinema, is an international non-profit association for people interested in early cinema, from its beginnings to 1915. The association strives to explore new methods of historical research and understanding, promoting the international exchange of information, documents and ideas. Recognizing that the work of the world's film archives for the last 50 years has made accessible a growing body of films and research materials in the realm of early cinema, DOMITOR also seeks to promote close relationships between scholars and archivists. DOMITOR is not an acronym: It revives the name that the father of the Lumière brothers once proposed for their projector of motion pictures.
DOMITOR was launched in October of 1985 in Pordenone, Italy, during the festival "Le giornate del cinema muto" by five founding members - Stephen Bottomore of the United Kingdom, Paolo Cherchi Usai of Italy, André Gaudreault of Canada, Tom Gunning of the United States, and Emmanuelle Toulet of France. The annual information meeting for DOMITOR is now regularly held at the Pordenone festival each October.
DOMITOR memberships are individual or institutional, and are open to anyone with a serious interest in early cinema. At present, there are about 300 members from over 30 countries. Members receive a bi-annual online newsletter and a Bulletin, available in French and English, that provides news of conferences, events and publications of interest to its members, and an exchange of research requests and information. The association is governed by an elected Executive Committee of nine members, who name the officers.
DOMITOR has published a Bibliographie internationale due cinéma des premiers temps (listing
writings on early cinema by DOMITOR members), edited by Emmanuelle Toulet, in 1987 and a
revised edition, edited by Elena Dagrada, 1995. In 1989, DOMITOR helped to organize symposiums
for the Lisbon congress of the Fédération Internationale des Archives du Film (FIAF) on "Cataloging
and Filmographic Research: Tracing the Past" and "Brighton Ten Years After," a summary of
development in historiography that followed the ground breaking FIAF Symposium of "Cinema
1900-1906" held in England in 1978.
One of DOMITOR's most important activities is the organization of biennial international
confererences on aspects of early cinema. The first such conference was held in Québec at the
Musée de la Civilisation in June 1990 on the topic of "Religion and Early Cinema."
Subsequent conferences were held in Lausanne (1992), New York (1994), Paris (1996), Washington (1998), Udine (2000), Montreal (2002), Utrecht. (2004),
Anne Arbor, Michigan (2006) and Perpignan/Girona (2008). The 2010 conference will be held
in Toronto, Canada.