|FIBA (Spring 1968)|
In 1968 and 1969 THE ZERO PRESS launched from London the film magazine called FIBA (FILMBANK) under the imprint Film Bank Publications. THE first issue of FIBA, dedicated to New Cinema, featured in its cover story Fionnula Flanagan, who was to appear that summer at the Lincoln Center in NYC in the lead role in Lovers by the Irish playwright Brian Friel (author of Philadelphia Here I Come). Flanagan starred in the 1996 Irish film Some Mother's Son. ALSO in this issue of FIBA appeared a lengthy editorial on the International Experimental Film Competition at Knokke-Le-Zoute, Belgium (started by Jacques Ledoux in 1949-50 over the Christmas and New Year's holidays and conducted thereafter only every five years). Among the extraordinary collection of unique films at Knokke in 1968-69 was the first feature-length film by Yoko Ono, called 365 Bottoms. On the jury that winter was Shirley Clark, director of films such as The Connection, The Cool World, and Portrait of Jason, who passed away in the summer of 1997. AMONG the contributors to this issue of FIBA were Calvin Hernton (author of Sex and Racism in America) and Bas van der Lecq (graduate of the Netherlands Film Academy). The issue also featured the first stills from Jean-Pierre Melville's brilliant film Le Samourai; notes on Britain's oldest and best Art Cinema house, Everyman; and the first public recognition of the most advanced music created in Britain in the sixties: The Spontaneous Music Ensemble (whose leader, John Stevens, passed away in London in 1994). Their music for the film version of David Chapman's book Withdrawal was recently released on Emanem Records (UK).