Big Donation by a Big Star

How do you research your collection? Do you talk to a dealer or other collectors?

Whether you collect memorabilia from Hollywood’s Golden Age, Robert De Niro’s award-winning film career or Texas Chainsaw Massacre, a major resource is the University of Texas’ Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center.

The center’s archives have been expanded by the donation of thousands of items from actor/director/producer Robert De Niro. The material relates to not only to his award-winning roles in Godfather II and Raging Bull, but also other films including The Deer Hunter and Frankenstein. The costume portion of the collection has more than 3,000 individual items, props from many of De Niro’s films and a full body cast used in the 1994 production of Frankenstein. De Niro also donated more than 100 boxes of paper items, including scripts with hand-written notations, correspondence with film notables such as Martin Scorsese and Elia Kazan, background research and the notebooks De Niro kept of his films.

The De Niro donation enhances the film collection at the Ransom Center, joining the archives of such film legends as David O. Selznick, Gloria Swanson and Ernest Lehman, adding significantly to the Center’s holdings in Hollywood filmmaking of the late 20th century.

The center’s research material also includes the archives of Myron Selznick’s Hollywood talent agency; scripts, files, notes, correspondence and memorabilia documenting the career of Zachary Scott (1914-1965); and papers and film from Texas-filmmaker Tobe Hooper’s early career, including original footage and outtakes from Texas Chainsaw Massacre.

The Harry Ransom Center’s collection includes more than 10,000 scripts for film, television and radio; more than 15,000 posters, lobby cards and other advertising materials; and more than 1 million photographs, including film stills, portrait and publicity photographs, set and location reference stills, makeup and wardrobe stills and candid, behind the scenes photographs.

For more information on the De Niro collection or the other holdings at the Harry Ransom Center visit www.hrc.utexas.edu.

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