'Rocky,' 'Blazing Saddles' Join Nat'l Registry

EntertainmentMoviesDocumentary (genre)Academy AwardsJean HarlowAlfred HitchcockHalloween

Thirty years after a beat-up boxer cried "Adrian" on the silver screen, the Oscar-winning "Rocky" has been assured a permanent place in America's film heritage.

The first of the boxing films starring Sylvester Stallone is one of the 25 films added to the Library of Congress' National Film Registry for 2006. The addition of these motion pictures brings the total number of films archived to 450.

"The annual selection of films to the National Film Registry involves far more than the simple naming of cherished and important films to a prestigious list," explains Librarian of Congress James H. Billington. "... It is an invaluable means to advance public awareness of the richness, creativity and variety of American film heritage, and to dramatize the need for its preservation."

Keeping company with "Rocky" are a number of comedies, documentaries, silent films, Chinese-American films and works by talented unknowns.

The most recognizable on the list include "Rocky," Mel Brooks' comic western "Blazing Saddles" (1974), Alfred Hitchcock's noir romance "Notorious" (1946) starring Ingrid Bergman and Cary Grant, John Carpenter's slasher pic "Halloween" (1978), Bill Murray's redemption comedy "Groundhog Day" (1993), 1996's dark comedy "Fargo" and Steven Soderbergh's "sex, lies and videotape," which led the way for independent film in 1989.

Cinematic firsts include 1929's "Applause" (for both for stage/director Rouben Mamoulian and cabaret/star Helen Morgan), John Wayne's first starring role in "The Big Trail" (1930), 1927's "Flesh and the Devil" (first on-screen pairing of silent superstars John Gilbert and Greta Garbo) and "Tess of the Storm Country" (1914), which made Mary Pickford Hollywood's first bonafide movie star.

The remainder of the 25 include the following: one of the earliest known Chinese-American features, "The Curse of Quon Gwon" (1916-17); "Daughter of Shanghai" (1937), starring Anna May Wong; the documentary "Drums of Winter" (1988), "Early Abstractions #1-5,7,10" (1939-56); the documentary "In the Street" (1948/52); the heartbreaking "The Last Command" (1928); the pre-Production Code "Red Dust" (1932), starring Clark Gable and Jean Harlow; "Reminiscences of a Journey to Lithuania" (1971-72); the brutal WWII footage of Warsaw in "Siege" (1940); the only known film recording of Bessie "Queen of Blues" Smith in "St. Louis Blues" (1929); the musical stylings of 1964's "The T.A.M.I. Show"; the amateur home movie "Think of Me First As a Person" (1960-75); the Oscar-winning student film "A Time Out of War" (1954); and 1913's white slavery epic "Traffic in Souls."

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