I can't belive...
This is so sad.
I talked with hin a lot by e-mails years ago, and tried to help with project he had in mind. It didn't got ahead due copyrights problems, and when I entered this forum I never told hin I was that person from years ago, cause it maybe could bring bad feelings about the problems back then, and I also feeled I failled about hadn't find out better sollutions or more people who could help to have more certain about the film's owners.
The project wasn't exactly for hin, and he was dispose even to lose money with it. It was a homage he would like to do a old friend, a brazilian diretor called Alberto Cavalcanti. According Shepard, Cavalcanti prefered film was O Canto do Mar (a remake kind of hi own early film called En Rade(1927). The idea for the homage was to bring both films to DVD.
Shepard was dispose to pay for all, the chemical film preservation, telecine, vídeo mastering, DVD printing, distribution. He only needed that someone authorized hin for this, allow he get the 35mm materails, make copy in good duplication stock.
For any presevartionist or film diretor (or family), film archive, this would be a bless, epecially here on Brazil, where films have limited budget for preservation and restoration . And this film a couple years from then was in a list of restoration Project here, but wasn't restored at that time.
I managed to talk the the brazilian cinematheque, and the archivists there helped me to track some 35mm elements, also 16mm print, and even sent hin a copy of a old VHS transfer of the film made by the cinemateca itself from a bad projection print, and Shepard gave a DVD of Cacalcante's Captain Fracasse (1929) in change.
The copyrights had problems, and in the end I could only find two possible owner, a woman who was a friend of a Cavalcante's relative that supoosed gave her the rights, and the son of the studio owner/producer that worked with Cavalcante. The son of the old studios owner was the most plausible copyright holder.
I talked with the manager of a very good film lab on Rio de Janeiro, and even managed to talk with a guy from Kodak of Brazil to get a discount for fine grain film duplication stock. I sent all data to Shepard and asked to wait some solid confirmation before pay for anything (rights, duplication stock film, lab). But he did not responded my messages after that. This help I gave was during two trips to Rio and one or two to São Paulo.
Not sure what happened, if he had problems with the Kodak guy, or with the copyright suposed owners. It's sad he could not make such homage to his friend. He had all good will to, and would pay for everything and even lost money, but bureocracy and copyrights was his enemy in this project.
He said it was a work of love, and not a work for money.
In the actual world, with so many people now so selfish, greed, individualist, alienated, dumb, hedonist, narcisic, the loss of people like David have a even greater impacts. It's like humanism is in danger of extinction.
People will miss you David. RIP film lover.