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Film preservationist Kevin Brownlow to receive Robert Osborne Award at TCM Classic Film Festival

Film historian and preservationist Kevin Brownlow, left, with Francis Ford Coppola and Eli Wallach during the 2010 Governors Awards in Hollywood in 2010.
(Anne Cusack / Los Angeles Times)

Kevin Brownlow, the noted British film historian and preservationist, will receive the Robert Osborne Award at this year’s TCM Classic Film Festival in April, Turner Classic Movies announced Thursday. Few have had a bigger impact on the continuing appreciation for silent film than Brownlow, who has devoted his life to chronicling the form.

Best known for his work bringing to life such silent classics as “A Woman of Affairs” (1928), “Sunrise” (1927) and Abel Gance’s “Napoleon” (1927), Brownlow is also a documentarian and author of books including “The Parade’s Gone By …” (1968), “The War, the West and the Wilderness” (1979) and “Behind the Mask of Innocence” (1990). The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences presented him an honorary Oscar in 2010.

Last year Martin Scorsese received the inaugural Osborne Award, given in honor of the longtime TCM host and film historian who died in 2017. This year’s award will be presented April 13 at a screening of Brownlow’s 1964 film “It Happened Here” during the festival in Hollywood. Controversial upon its release, “It Happened Here” is an alternative World War II history in which Nazi Germany invades and occupies the United Kingdom.

Organizers previously announced that Billy Crystal will be honored with a hand-and-footprint ceremony on April 12.

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The 10th TCM Classic Film Festival runs April 11-14 at various venues in Hollywood.

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