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Restored Mallory film to premiere in London
A FILM capturing a famous Mobberley mountaineer’s last recorded steps will hit cinema screens across the country on October 18.
The newly-restored official film of the legendary 1924 Everest expedition, The Epic of Everest, will have its world premiere at the 57th BFI London Film Festival before being released in cinemas nationwide next month.
Two of the finest climbers of their generation, Mobberley-born George Mallory and Andrew Irvine disappeared on the expedition, and whether they reached the 29,028-foot summit remains one of mountaineering’s most enduring mysteries.
Robin Baker, head curator at BFI National Archive, said: “This is one of the greatest treasures of the BFI National Archive.
“It represents a key moment in the history of mountaineering and remains an enduring monument to Mallory and Irvine.
“This film is a precious record of endurance and is a powerful piece of cinema now beautifully restored to show how Everest was so nearly conquered.”
The frozen body of Mallory, who grew up in Hobcroft House, was found in May 1999, but Irvine’s body has never been recovered despite numerous attempts.
Captain John Noel, a pioneering explorer, documented the men’s last journey on a specially-adapted camera.
As well as capturing his comrades’ battle to the summit, the film is also among the earliest records of life in Tibet.
Robin added: “It is highly appropriate to present this film now, 60 years since Everest was finally conquered by a British expedition, and 100 years since Captain John Noel first set eyes on the mountain.”
The restoration by the BFI National Archive has transformed the quality of the surviving elements of the film and reintroduced the original coloured tints and tones.
It also features a new score by composer Simon Fisher Turner with a specially-created musical ensemble featuring electronic music, found sounds, western and Nepalese instruments and vocals.
For more information about The Epic of Everest visit bfi.org.uk.
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