Smithsonian 175th Film Fest: Panda-monium

GIF of a panda cub in an enclosure. He rounds a corner and a much large panda is there and knocks hi

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For nearly 50 years, visitors to the Smithsonian’s National Zoo have been in a state of panda-monium. Millions of fans from around the world first hurried to catch a glimpse of giant pandas when a pair arrived from China in April 1972. During this month’s Smithsonian 175th Film Fest program, audiences will be able to view footage of Hsing-Hsing and Ling-Ling in their first days at the National Zoo. We’ll then fast forward more than 30 years to the birth of Tai Shan, the Zoo’s first surviving giant panda cub, in 2005. Footage of the cub includes his check-ups with zoologists in front of the press and some playtime with his mother, Mei Xiang. Stay tuned as the Zoo’s Laurie Thompson, assistant curator of giant pandas, and Dr. Melissa Songer, conservation ecologist, join Archives historian Hannah Byrne for a conversation following the films.

About the Smithsonian 175th Film Fest: Films from the Smithsonian Institution Archives

To celebrate the Smithsonian Institution’s 175th anniversary in 2021, the Smithsonian Libraries and Archives is hosting monthly programs featuring films from the collections of the Smithsonian Institution Archives. The series will be hosted virtually between August 2021 and August 2022.

In addition to the film screenings, archivists, conservators, and subject experts will also provide some context to the videos, share a little about their work, and answer questions from the audience during the one-hour programs. These screenings will also be the first instance that the films have ever been screened online to the public.

There are multiple ways to watch. Audiences can either register for the webinar or tune into the livestream on our YouTube channel homepage.

Thursday, December 16, 2021 - 5:00pm