ProQuest Launches Film Indexes Online; Debuts Twentieth Century Drama Database

Jan 16, 2004

ProQuest Information and Learning has launched Film Indexes Online and announced the first release of Twentieth Century Drama database. Film Indexes Online is a new portal for subscribers to the AFI Catalog and Film Index International. It was created in partnership with two film research organizations: the American Film Institute and the British Film Institute. Film Indexes Online brings the two products together and provides cross-searchable access to information on American and international films from over 170 countries since 1900. Both indexes are updated twice each year.

The AFI Catalog, compiled through the American Film Institute, presents a detailed view of American feature films produced during the last century up to 1970. AFI Catalog offers production and cast information, plot summaries, and production notes. Developed by the British Film Institute, Film Index International gives international coverage of films and film personalities from over 170 countries. Film Index International is based on the British Film Institute's Summary of Information on Film and Television (SIFT) database and covers all eras of film-making. Film Indexes Online can be used to cross-search both FII and AFI Catalog or to search the individual databases separately. Usage statistics will be available by resource or in total. Film Index International and AFI Catalog will continue to be available as stand-alone products. Free trials are available.  

ProQuest Information and Learning has also announced the first release of Twentieth Century Drama. When complete, the new database is expected to contain 2,500 plays in English, from the 1890s to the present day, in searchable full text. ProQuest intends to represent the full range of dramatic styles, genres, and traditions, from widely studied and frequently performed plays to important examples of radical theater, regional theater, post-colonial theater, women's theater, and popular forms such as farce and thriller that are often under-represented in surveys of the period.

The first release, now available, includes 239 plays by 25 authors from Britain, Ireland, and Australia. It emphasizes the period from the 1890s to 1920s and also includes plays by important literary authors of the period, including poetic dramas such as Thomas Hardy's The Dynasts (1904-08), James Elroy Flecker's Hassan (1923), and Joseph Conrad's adaptation of his novel The Secret Agent (1922). Authors and plays have been selected by an academic advisory board. The collection includes each writer's complete dramatic works for major authors. For less prominent authors, a representative sample has been selected. In some cases, a single play by a given author has been included owing to its particular significance. Selection has been limited to works originally written in English, however, translations of non-English-language works have been included where these form part of a playwright's main oeuvre. Each text is reproduced in full, including any accompanying text by the author, plus relevant supplementary matter such as dramatis personae and any illustrations that are integral to the text. Users many search by keyword, title, playwright (by name, gender and/or nationality), date first performed, publication date, and genre or they may browse lists of options for most fields.

The majority of the plays contained in Twentieth-Century Drama are copyright works that have never before been licensed for electronic reproduction. In accordance with the high value of this content, the rights that have been granted by the rights holders have certain restrictions attached to them: users can only download smaller divisions of a work, such as an act or scene, and users wishing to print sections of a text must first confirm that they will not infringe conditions of fair usage. Public domain texts can be accessed without such restrictions. Twentieth Century Drama is available by subscription or as a stand-alone purchase. Free trials are available.