(RNN) - Librarian of Congress James H. Billington selected 25 films spanning the period of 1912-1994, to be preserved as "cultural, artistic and historical treasures" in the National Film Registry of the Library of Congress.
The most notable titles included the award-winning Forrest Gump, the Disney classic Bambi, and the thriller The Silence of the Lambs.
[SLIDESHOW: National Film Registry additions 2011]
"These films are selected because of their enduring significance to American culture," said Billington in a statement.
More than 2,228 titles were nominated this year and each selection was reviewed by the librarian, curators, and the National Film Preservation Board before a final decision was made.
The films were preserved as part of the National Film Preservation Act of 1988. Films must be at least 10 years old to be eligible, but they do not have to be feature-length or have had a theatrical release.
"Our film heritage must be protected because these cinematic treasures document our history and culture and reflect our hopes and dreams," said Billington.
With the addition of these films in 2011, the registry contains 575 films.
The Library of Congress, founded in 1800, is the nation's oldest federal cultural institution. You can make nominations for next year's registry at the NFPB website.