Bulimia (1982)

8 Mar
Director None Listed
Producer Hugh Downs, Danny Schecter
Contributors ABC Wide World of News
Length 12 minutes
B&W/Color Color
UO Library Catalog description: Host Hugh Downs examines the danger of the binge-eating disorder, bulimia, and its effects on victims through interviews with experts; recovered bulimics, including actress Jane Fonda; and parents of bulimics. Shows scenes of group therapy for eating problems.
Call # Mc333
Genre Educational Films, Short Films United States
Rare No
Online No
Copyright status Copyright 1982
Physical condition Very Poor
Oregon-related No

Notes: Bulimia is a short documentary style film presented by ABC warning against the risks and dangers of bulimia. It originally aired in 1983 as part of an episode of 20/20. The program was intended for Junior High School through college students, but also served as a supplemental piece for parents in order to identify warning signs of the disorder. It features various interviews with experts, recovered bulimics, parents of bulimics, and most notably the actress Jane Fonda, who revealed her condition for the first time ever on air for the program.

The film was hosted by Hugh Downs, a prominent American broadcaster, television host, news anchor, TV producer, author, game show host and music composer. Downs was very active in public service and politics, bringing attention to many serious issues through PSA’s on television and radio. He was also known for his pronounced libertarian views. Downs was particularly involved in raising awareness about eating disorders. Bulimia was not the only film that downs was a part of that addressed the disorder. In 1996 another film, Eating Disorders: The Hunger Within was aired on 20/20 as a collaboration with Barbara Walters.

Unfortunately the condition of the film reel is extremely poor. Upon evaluating it I found that it is so warped that it can barely be run from reel to reel and some of the perforated edges are so damaged that I cannot imagine it being able to run through a projector properly. Another thing I should add is that it has a very blue/green tint, suggesting again that it was shot on Ektachrome X film. The production date of the Bulimia in 1982 would correspond with the dates that this type of film was being used (1963-1984).

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