The National Film and Sound Archive (NFSA) based in Australia has the primary responsibility of managing the national audiovisual collection and to build, preserve, interpret and make accessible that collection in accordance with the National Film and Sound Archive Act 2008 (NFSA Act) and the NFSA collections policy and statement of curatorial values.

In short, the history of Australian film is in the hands of the NFSA. And one of the ongoing projects of the NFSA , is to locate ‘lost’ Australian films and to save them from deterioration and to preserve them for future generations.

One man who has had the responsibility of this and many other NFSA projects is Graham Shirley – the NFSA Historian.
He spoke to me about the ongoing journey of finding ‘lost’ Australian films.

 Further information on the National Film and Sound Archive can be located at

 From a personal point of view, I have donated colour film of the 1969 VFL Grand Final to the NFSA, and have found their process and acquistion to be most professional.
 I urge all people who think they may have an old piece of film, or know of someone who might have an old piece of film, to simply make a short phone call to the NFSA.  That small effort of a phone call, may turn into the rescue of an important piece of Australian film.

Many thanks to Graham Shirley for giving up his time to talk about things that are lost.


Interview: March 2011