Hi Marj! Your notes were so super helpful. Good to be here.
My name is Tom Hall and I am Director of Programming at the Sarasota Film Festival in Sarasota, FL. I am excited to finally stop lurking in the public forum and become a part of this site. Needless to say, I am honored to be here and hope that our festival will continue to grow as a place for non-fiction artists to share their work with an appreciative audience.
I also write a blog on the indieWIRE blog network called THE BACK ROW MANIFESTO, which tends to languish this time of year as the pressures of the festival get more intense and strip away any time I have for writing, but I do hope you'll check it out. Anyway, If I can offer any feedback or you want to give me your thoughts on any subject, please do not hesitate to let me know. Thanks for having me here!
PS- That Oscar is real, but it is not mine. One day...
Always great to welcome a lurker, Tom – don't be shy about publicising your blog (the address is in Tom's profile)
Oh, hell, let's just make it real easy for everyone. It's a great blog and Tom is truly one of the great festival programmers around, bar none (and Sarasota one of the most fun festivals for filmmakers, especially if you like glitzy parties with grilled shrimp and mojitos and the like).
Welcome, Tom. Hope you'll hang out here a lot.
I was just surfing the web trying to find info on documentary filmaking when I came across this site. Looked like it might be a good place to get some advice/feedback on an idea I've been kicking around for a long time.
My background is that of an (amateur) historian although I do have an advanced degree in the discipline. I've been studying a major character from 19th century European history for years and have a very strong conviction that he would make a fantastic subject for a documentary. I have it from a very reliable source that absolutely nothing has ever been done on him in the U.S. and that whatever European documentaries have been made are of poor quality.
On the plus side, there is a surprising amount of primary source, photographic and illustrative material right here in the U.S. But obviously in order to do the kind of quality job I believe this person is entitled to, a lot of the work and filming would have to be done in Europe.
So, once again, I would love to get some advice on how to get a project like this going or if it would even be possible for someone like me who has no background in filmaking or production (i.e. should I start with a far more scaled down project on another topic and see if I can even get that made?). I know I have a great idea here. But I realize that sometimes that is not enough.
Hello! i am new here+. I am researching nature/envornmental documentaries worldwide, and I don't know where to start. I want to know the names of the biggest/most important/most famous ones in countries like Italy, Greece, Denmark, Could anyone help me?
Google "environmental documentary festival" and you'll get an instant list of useful titles.
Hi! My name is Suzanne Wasserman. I'm an historian and film maker. I am the Director of The Gotham Center for NYC History at the CUNY Graduate Center. I'm in the middle of making my 3rd documentary film called The Sweatshop Cinderella. It's about the Jewish immigrant writer Anzia Yezierska. My other films are: Thunder in Guyana (2003) and Brooklyn: Among the Ruins (2005)
I'm happy to join The D-Word. My experiences in the doc film world have been wonderful. I've been so busy the last few years between the Center, family and making films! Now, I'd like to become more active in the doc film makers community.
Welcome, Suzanne. And greetings for the second time today (Suzanne and I are old friends and had coffee this morning).
Suzanne has the great idea of holding occasional work-in-progress screenings at the Gotham Center for docs that are centered on some aspect of NYC history or have a heavy NYC flavor or character. It will be a great way for a filmmaker to get feedback from its core audience (and not just other film folks) and to start building an email list of core supporters early on in the process.
She'll be in touch soon with a general announcement, but I'm sure she would welcome anyone interested with a doc that fits to contact her directly: SWasserman@gc.cuny.edu
My name is Hande. I have been in documentary production/distribution/marketing business since mid-90s. I am curious what filmmakers are thinking about the state of documentary distribution and distributors.
You've come to the right place, Hande... welcome! I recommend you read through the old threads in the areas you're interested in, there is a wealth of information therein.
Hande be prepared for some tough talk.
Yeah, Hande, you might want to stop in at the Doc Bar & Grill for a few good drinks before trying to reason with the torch-and-pitchfork crowd over in Marketing And Distribution...
And then after you try and reason, take thee to the Parking Lot and rage to your heart's content. Welcome, Hande.
Hello everyone. It was suggested I join the D-Word from James Longley after contacting him. My name is Christopher Feder and I am serving with the US Army in Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. I joined because I am making a Documentary of my deployment and there is no better place to go then where film makers go. I spent about 5 years in the business in the mid 1990's. I worked my way up from a 4th Electrician to Best Boy Electric and Dolly Grip. I left the industry in 1998 to pursue a different career. Now, 10 years later I find myself back in the "PA" spot on the call sheet. How this business has changes, particularly the technology end of it. The Digital, HiDef and lower price consumer cameras have really changed the business. I am eager to learn and â€œre-learnâ€ as a much as I can to make this production work. Just a little background, I am making a documentary of this deployment to show the people what it takes to support war. This production DOES not involve politics and does not take sides to the war in Afghanistan. What I am doing is documenting a â€œBehind the scenesâ€ look into â€œone soldierâ€™sâ€ tour of duty and his life at war. I have a lot of questions and welcome positive feedback as well as constructive criticism. Thanks for allowing me to be apart of your community.
Great to have you join us Christopher. But you've only gone half-way in the process towards full membership, where you'll have access to many more discussion topics, including the technical ones. Proceed to www.d-word.com/users/apply. And keep safe, ok?
Christopher – nice to have another Philadelphian join us. Hope you stay out of harm's way.
Hello all. I am a UK/US filmmaker based in Barcelona, Spain. I earn my bread & butter as a camera operator & editor for broadcast projects & am slowly building an independent platform called shotcuts with my partner Laura to begin producing our own films.
I have Ben Kempas to thank for introducing me to the D Word community, he has had many great things to say about the community & I look forward to meeting some of you in the future.
Many thanks to you all for welcoming me & all the best.
Hah, who says we're welcoming you? I've known you for 10 years now, so do I really have to...? Ah well, welcome Jim. :-)
To all others: Jim Loomis is a very good friend. We worked together on a number of projects, including "To Be A Nation Again". He is the cinematographer and editor of the high-profile documentary, The Madrid Connection
Well, glad it only took 10 years for my persuasive co-host to rope you in here, Jim. Oh, wait, we've only been around for 8 years. My bad.
Hello! I am Mukul, a cinematographer and documentary film maker based in Bombay, India. I just found this space and it sounds great. Looking forward to interacting with people working in the field of independent documentary making and exchanging ideas on technical and other issues related to our field.
You're very welcome, Mukul. We have at least 25 members in India BTW. What project are you working on at the moment?
I'm based in the hills south of Modena, Italy, near to the Tuscany border. I've been working for the last year and a half – more like two, come to think of it – on a film in Bombay about the Dharavi redevelopment project, a pilot slum rehab project, as writer and co-director, with some responsibilities for camera and location sound. So it was a pretty exhausting experience! Just back now in Italy and thinking what to do next. I got into documentary serendipitously after a photostory I did about village demolitions in the west bank caught the attention of a South African producer who contacted me to make a film about it. That was in 2002. I acted as director during the shoot on location in Israel for that – as a first timer I was completely out of my depth. The result wasn't something I was totally happy about, but it made me determined to make a film about the Bombay slums, a subject I've been photographing and writing about for many years, which led to the production of this recent project. So, I'm here to meet fellow documentarians and get a feeling of how the industry works.
Welcome, Mikul and Rob. Rob, feel free to register for full membership which gives you access to many more discussion topics.
Hello all, I am just finishing a feature length doc on Asian massage parlors in RI, where prostitution is legal. Please check out my trailer on youtube and tell me what you think.
Also here is my new website
Check out the characters and all the info, but don't use the form email, I am having some problems getting that to work.
OK, now that I have introduced myself, off I go to the forum because I need some help!