Murnau’s film, shot in the South Pacific, is about the love between Matahi and Reri that is sacrificed to religion and tradition.
Due to its unique proliferation history, Murnau’s last film TABU (USA 1930/31) is a particularly revealing example of how audio-visual cultural assets can be safeguarded. Next to the different versions of the film, there is 17500 metres of film material. Unused footage, the so called outtakes.
The KUR Programme for the conservation and restoration of moveable cultural assets – initiated by the Federal Cultural Foundation and the Cultural Foundation of the German Länder – was able to preserve the perishable nitrate film footage and publish it in digital form.
In addition the TABU script as well as the daily journals of the shooting period have been made accessible for this online edition.
The film premiered in New York 80 years ago, just days after the director died in a car crash. F.W. Murnau’s TABU is shown in a special screening to celebrate the presentation of the outtakes.
by Friedrich Wilhelm Murnau
with Reri, Matahi, Hitu