T. it.: Pioggia; Sog. e scen.: Mannus Franken, Joris Ivens; F.: Joris Ivens; M.: Joris Ivens; Prod.: Capi-Holland 35mm. D.: 11’. Bn
It took Joris Ivens two years – from November 1927 till its premiere in December 12th 1929 – to shoot enough footage of rain showers in Amsterdam with which he could edit a short poetic film of almost 12 minutes. In 1941 the exiled artist Hanns Eisler also got inspired by Ivens’ Regen when he was commissioned by the Rockefeller Foundation to work on the Film & Music project in New York. He dedicated his Fourteen Ways to Describe Rain to his teacher Arnold Schönberg. After several screening in 1947 the only print of the sound version got lost without a trace.
Over the decades the Joris Ivens collection of the Netherlands Filmmuseum acquired 38 copies of 11 versions of this short film Regen. Like real rain showers every version differs from the other in duration, images and editing.
When trying to reconstruct the Regen sound version of 1941 the principal problem was to find the right version which Eisler was supposed to have used. In 2002 musicologist Johannes C. Gall found the original shellac records.
André Stufkens – European Foundation Joris Ivens