It's worth bearing in mind that the Code engendered indirect, de facto
censorship on the level of availability and reliability of lab services.
The legit labs would routinely destroy, confiscate or forward to law
enforcement materials they deemed prurient or deviant. Don't know what sort
precautions, if any, Markopoulos took, but would be interested.

On Mon, Oct 29, 2012 at 10:01 AM, Royce Marcus (Film) <> wrote:

> I also can't answer your original question, but I'd like to reinforce what
> Johnathan has said and add some of my own findings.  My senior thesis was
> an investigation between the intersections of American Avant-Garde cinema
> and American Pornography, specifically in the '60s and '70s, and the
> filmmakers of the avant-garde really didn't care about censorship, be it
> from the Production Code, or more severe legal repercussions from obscenity
> laws.  Most avant-garde filmmakers were content presenting their films in
> microcinemas or film societies, right beside exploitation, sexploitation,
> and pornographic films.  It wasn't until Jack Smith's Flamming Creatures
> went in front Federal Court that the avant-garde had to defend itself.
> Even then, most avant-garde filmmakers were only looking to defend
> themselves (in the legal realm at least).  It was pornographic filmmakers
> that were much more aggressive when it terms of directly challenging and
> fighting things like the Production Code, obscenity laws, etc.
> I don't have access to the book, but while I'd say there were for fewer
> venues for Anger and other avant-grade filmmakers, gay or otherwise, to
> release there work in the '40s and '50s, they still clearly did and they
> had enough of an impact and relevance to be recognized throughout the
> decades.  Not sure if this helps.  Best of luck!
> Royce
> On Sun, Oct 28, 2012 at 9:13 PM, Jonathan Walley <>wrote:
>> Eleni,
>> I'd be interested to hear other peoples' perspective on this, but the
>> Production Code had little, if anything, to do with censorship
>> problems encountered by experimental filmmakers like Anger or
>> Markopoulos. The Code was developed by the film industry (i.e.
>> Hollywood), and, to the best of my knowledge, only affected the
>> production (and distribution) of industry films - that is, films made
>> by the Hollywood studios. It was a mechanism the industry developed to
>> "self regulate," precisely so their films WOULDN'T be censored by
>> outside law enforcement or other government authorities. The Code thus
>> had no bearing on filmmakers working outside the industry, which would
>> certainly include Anger and Markopoulos.
>> This isn't to say that such filmmakers faced no censorship - they
>> faced it from legal authorities and "morality" and "decency" groups -
>> just that they didn't face it from within the industry, since they
>> were not a part of that industry and thus were not bound by its
>> internal strictures. The "rules" of the Code had no legal power, as
>> they were voluntarily imposed from within the industry BY the industry
>> itself. They were essentially "company policy," not state or federal
>> law. And a film released with the Production Code Administration's
>> seal of approval could still be censored by local government
>> authorities if those authorities believed the film contravened state
>> or local laws governing film content.
>> I read the relevant passages of Russo's book, and while he does
>> mention the Code while also discussing the films of Anger and other
>> experimental filmmakers, he seems only to be drawing a - rather vague
>> - parallel. If I read him right he never actually claims that the
>> Production Code had any direct impact on experimental films. And if he
>> DOES say that somewhere, it's not accurate. Any censorship of
>> experimental films came from the government, not the industry, and
>> thus not the Code.
>> I realize this doesn't answer your question about Markopoulos being
>> censored, but I hope it helps a little.
>> Best,
>> Jonathan
>> Jonathan Walley
>> Associate Professor of Cinema
>> Denison University
>> On Sun, Oct 28, 2012 at 7:48 PM, Eleni Philippou
>> <> wrote:
>> > Hello everyone,
>> >
>> >
>> > I am reading Vito Russo's book The Celluloid Closet about the Production
>> > Code in order to control homosexual references in the movies in America
>> > during the '40s and '50s. As an example, he mentions Kenneth Anger's
>> work
>> > and how difficult was for Anger to release Fireworks and Scorpio Rising
>> > because of this Production Code. Does anyone know if Gregory Markopoulos
>> > faced the same problem with the censorship?
>> > Thank you very much for your help.
>> >
>> >
>> > Best,
>> >
>> >
>> > Eleni Filippou
>> >
>> > _______________________________________________
>> > FrameWorks mailing list
>> >
>> >
>> >
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