“Forrest Gump,” the multiple-Oscar winning 1994 film starring Tom Hanks as an American innocent navigating the social changes of the 1960s and 1970s, was named to the Library of Congress’s National Film Registry on Wednesday, along with 24 other films deemed worthy of preservation at the library’s conservation facility in Culpeper, Va.
This year’s list spans more than 80 years, with “Forrest Gump” being the most recent title and “A Cure for Pokeritis,” a silent comedy made in 1912, being the oldest. A number of this year’s inductees have to do with social issues, from the documentaries “The Negro Soldier” and “Crisis: Behind a Presidential Commitment” to the child-labor melodrama “The Cry of the Children” and “The Lost Weekend,” starring Ray Milland as a man battling alcoholism.
Every year, Librarian of Congress James H. Billington personally selects which films will be added to the National Film Registry, working from a list of suggestions from the library’s National Film Preservation Board and the general public. “What it’s proven to me, having done it now for a number of years, is the continuing inventiveness and diversity of how moving images and the film industry have flourished in this country,” Billington said. “There’s just terrific variety and richness.”