Restored 'Metropolis' to screen at Berlin

Original 16 mm negative print found in Buenos Aires

COLOGNE, Germany -- A restored version of Fritz Lang's original cut of his silent classic "Metropolis" will have its premiere Feb. 12 at the Friendrichtstadtpalast as part of the 60th Berlin International Film Festival.

Lang's science fiction opus premiered in its original 153-minute version at the Ufa Palast in Berlin on Jan. 10, 1927. But it was a huge flop with audiences and critics at the time and was chopped down substantially. Much of the original footage disappeared and was thought lost forever.

Even the famed 2001 restored version of "Metropolis," which also premiered at the Berlin festival, was a good half-hour shorter than Lang's original.

But last year, an original 16 mm negative print, likely the last in existence, was discovered at the Museo del Cine Pablo in Buenos Aires. The Wilhelm-Murnau Foundation, together with broadcasters ZDF and art and Berlin film museum the Deutsche Kinemathek, have restored the film to its original form.

Conductor Frank Strobel and the Berlin Rundfunk Symphony Orchestra will accompany the gala screening with a version of the film's music based on the original score by Gottfried Huppertz.

Based on the original score by Gottfried Huppertz, the screening will be accompanied by the Minister of State and Commissioner for Cultural and Media Affairs Bernd Neumann will attend the event.

Parallel to the Berlin gala, "Metropolis" will be screened Feb. 12 at in the Alte Oper house in Frankfurt.