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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Restrictions on Use and Reproduction
  • Restrictions on Access
  • Provenance/Source of Acquisition
  • Preferred Citation
  • Biography
  • Scope and Content
  • UCLA Catalog Record ID

  • Title: Paul Rotha papers
    Collection number: 2001
    Contributing Institution: UCLA Library Special Collections
    Language of Material: English
    Physical Description: 42.0 linear ft. (84 boxes and 7 oversize boxes)
    Date: 1926-1979
    Abstract: Paul Rotha (1907-1984) was a film critic, documentary filmmaker, and movie director. The collection consists of materials related to Rotha's documentary and feature films and Rotha's books on the cinema.
    Physical location: Stored off-site at SRLF. Advance notice is required for access to the collection. Please contact the UCLA Library Special Collections Reference Desk for paging information.
    Selected digitized images from this collection.
    Creator: Rotha, Paul, 1907-

    Restrictions on Use and Reproduction

    Property rights to the physical object belong to UCLA Library Special Collections. Literary rights, including copyright, are retained by the creators and their heirs. It is the responsibility of the researcher to determine who holds the copyright and pursue the copyright owner or his or her heir for permission to publish where The UC Regents do not hold the copyright.

    Restrictions on Access

    Open for research. STORED OFF-SITE AT SRLF. Advance notice is required for access to the collection. Please contact UCLA Library Special Collections for paging information.

    Provenance/Source of Acquisition

    • Motley Books, Limited, purchase, 1967.
    • Paul Rotha, purchase, 1980.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Paul Rotha Papers (Collection 2001). UCLA Library Special Collections, Charles E. Young Research Library, University of California, Los Angeles.


    Paul Rotha was born in London, England on June 3, 1907; a former painter and designer, he became a film critic and wrote a seminal work on cinema history titled, The film till now (1930); began making his own documentary films in association with John Grierson and was a leading figure in the British documentary movement of the 1930s and 1940s; directed three feature films in the 1950-60s; writings include: Documentary film (1935), Rotha on the film (1958), and The innocent eye: A biography of Robert Flaherty (1963); died on March 7, 1984.

    Scope and Content

    Collection consists of projects, early treatments, narration scripts, technical plans and shooting scripts for Mr. Rotha's documentary and feature films. Also includes manuscript, typescript, and proof copies of Rotha's books on the cinema along with clippings of his periodical writings and review articles. Reviews and articles on Rotha are both loose and in scrapbooks. Includes Rotha's personal diaries as well as correspondence from John Grierson, Eric Knight, and Richard Griffith, among others. There are art works from the 1920s, photographs (mostly location stills), and recording tapes from Rotha's films.

    UCLA Catalog Record ID

    UCLA Catalog Record ID: 2976690 

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    Rotha, Paul, 1907- --Archives.
    Film critics--Archival resources.
    Motion picture producers and directors--Archival resources.
    Screenwriters--Archival resources.