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Magyar Nemzeti Filmarchívum (MNFA)

Magyar Nemzeti Filmarchívum (Hungarian National Film Archive) is tracing back to a plan of Béla Balázs. The Archive has the most extensive film collection in Hungary.

The Hungarian Institute of Film Science was founded in 1957 and is based on the plan drafted by Béla Balázs in 1948. Its name has been changed to Hungarian Film Institute in 1985. Since June 2000 it is called Hungarian National Film Archive, the status is a 'national public collection' since 1991.

The Archive's duties: collection, acquisition, preservation, restoration, screening and professional storage of the Hungarian features, documentaries, newsreels, animations, popular science films and classics of world cinema. Purposes of the work and activities are contained by the Deed of Foundation (May 16, 2000). The maintainer and supervisor is the Ministry of Hungarian National Cultural Heritage.

The Archive has the most extensive film collection in Hungary, approximately 64,000 inventory items. The Archive distributes film copies: some prints are lent for training, clubs and festivals. The Library is the largest and only one specialised on film in Hungary. It contains over 20,000 books, 4,000 volumes of periodicals, 3,500 scripts and 30 current foreign technical journals. The poster department preserves 53,000 posters and 200,000 photographs. The art cinema, Örökmozgó has an unique and highly exciting programme with a widely appreciated venue for exhibitions, meetings and debates. The periodicals are Filmkultúra published since 1960 and now available online, Filmspirál, Muszter, MovEast (English).

Hungarian films are permanently restored. A major task of the Hungarian National Film Archive is to make the values of surviving Hungarian film culture available to a broader audience, including researchers and to preserve them for the future. This requires diligent storage and if necessary, restoration of films. Film restoration has been systematical since the establishment of the Foundation for the Past and Present of Hungarian Film in 1989. We aim to transfer nitrate-based films received by our collection on safety film as quickly as possible and to produce safety reproduction materials of them.

Supported by the Hungarian Ministry of Information Technology and Telecommunications, in spring 2006 we started digitising 100 feature films and a body of newsreels extending to ten years. The films can be reached on the homepage of NAVA (National Audio-visual Archives) at registered town and county libraries, universities and secondary schools: they can be watched, but not downloaded. The digitalisation of the first one hundred films and making them available online is the first stage of a long-range procedure.


The Hungarian Film Office (MFI) was founded in 1924 and in the same year started producing weekly newsreels until 1944. MFI switched to sound technology in 1931 while producing issue Nr. 400. Between 1945–1948 not only one company produced newsreels. The legal successor of the MFI, Magyar Központi Híradó (Hungarian Central News) produced Weekly News in 1945 – a total of 10 issues. After 1945, several parties appeared with newsreels for a short time. In the same year, Mafirt Krónika (the weekly news of the Hungarian Film Industry Co.) was launched under the auspices of the Communist Party – 112 issues were released. From 1948, its role was taken over by the Hungarian Film News (Magyar Filmhíradó), produced by the New Hungarian Film Office. Due to the influence of socialism, the Hungarian Film Production National Company (Magyar Filmgyártó Nemzeti Vállalat) united every branch of the profession – including the news section – in 1948. 55 newsreel issues were produced in this series in 1949. The 52 issues of Hungarian Film News (Magyar Filmhíradó) renumbered every year, commenced from the first week of April 1949. From 1950, Hungarian Film News was produced in the Hungarian Newsreel and Documentary Film Studio until the change of regime in 1991, except late October and December of 1956, when newsreels were suspended. Above the weekly, thematic and special newsreels were produced in the recent decades. The latter are recorded among documentaries. In addition to the materials edited in Hungary, foreign newsreels can also be found in the Archive.

 Magyar Nemzeti Filmarchívum