20 FEET FROM STARDOM from director Morgan Neville was one of the films named to the Oscar doc shortlist this week.
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) this week announced the 15 docs named to this year’s Oscar shortlist. Adam Benzine of Realscreen covered the news, as did Peter Knegt of Indiewire and Tim Gray of Variety. Basil Tsiokos took a look at the shortlisted films and linked to previous coverage of them at his What (Not) to Blog, while Larry Rohter of the New York Times noted a focus on politics and music. Inkoo Kang of the Women in Hollywood blog at Indiewire took note of five women directors whose films made the shortlist. In his Docutopia post at the SundanceNOW blog, Anthony Kaufman examined the effect that recent rule changes had on the doc Oscar process. And Lily Rothman of Time explained how viewers could watch every film on the doc shortlist.
The other big news came this week when the Sundance Film Festival announced the films in its 2014 lineup. Again, Adam Benzine had coverage at Realscreen, as did Daniel Fienberg of Hitfix. Indiewire had a rundown of the films in the World Cinema doc competition, and in the U.S. doc competition. Christopher Campbell had a nice rundown of the Sundance films, along with some trailers for films. And Kevin Ritchie of Realscreen had coverage of the docs screening at this year’s Slamdance.
The International Documentary Association (IDA) also had its awards ceremony this week, with Anne Thompson and Ryan Lattanzio of the Thompson on Hollywood blog at Indiewire providing coverage. Scott Feinberg of The Hollywood Reporter also wrote up the awards.
This week the International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam (IDFA) named its award winners, with SONG FROM THE FOREST named the best feature-length documentary. At DocGeeks, Alexandra Zeevalkink also had coverage of the awards, as did Jennifer Merin of About.com. Brian Brooks of the Film Society of Lincoln Center website reported on the the new doc AI WEI WEI: THE FAKE CASE from director Andreas Johnson, which premiered at IDFA. Emma Norton of the DocGeeks blog also took a look at the new Ai Wei Wei doc. Peter Knegt of Indiewire also reported that IDFA had named a special jury award in honor of the late Peter Wintonick. Realscreen’s Adam Benzine reported that international rights–excluding the U.S.–for AMERICAN ARAB had been nabbed by Cargo Film & Releasing at IDFA. And the POV blog this week took note of the digital storytelling manifesto that came out of Quebec recently.
Award season unofficially kicked off this week, apparently. Barry Walsh of Realscreen reported that Ken Loach would receive an honorary Golden Bear award at the upcoming Berlin International Film Festival. Walsh also had news of the Film Independent Spirit Awards’ nominees for the documentary prize, as did Christopher Campbell of Nonfics.com and Peter Knegt of Indiewire. At The Wrap, Steve Pond had coverage of the Producers Guild of America doc award nominees. And Adam Benzine covered the Montreal International Documentary Film Festival (RIDM) awards for Realscreen.
The Cinema Eye Honors named its nominees for its Heterodox award, given to a film that bridges the gap between fiction and documentary. Kevin Ritchie covered the news at Realscreen, with Sara Salovaara doing the same for Filmmaker Magazine. At Nonfics.com, Christopher Campbell wrote up the Heterodox award nominees, along with the news that Josh Fox would receive the Hell Yeah Prize for his GASLAND docs.
The filmmaker Peter Wintonick passed away last week and was remembered by the doc community.
The documentary community this past week continued to remember filmmaker Peter Wintonick, who passed away from a rare form of liver cancer last Monday. In a touching piece for Indiewire, Heather Croall, director of the Sheffield Doc/Fest, remembered Wintonick. Marc Glassman did the same at Canada’s POV Magazine, and you can read Wintonick’s own “Doc the World” manifesto at POV’s site here. Adam Benzine of Realscreen wrote on various elements of the doc community celebrating Wintonick’s life, and also reported that the Thessaloniki Documentary Festival in Greece had named an award after Wintonick. The CBC reported on Wintonick’s passing, while Matthew Pearson and Brendan Kelly of the Ottawa Citizen wrote on Wintonick’s perhaps best known work, MANUFACTURING CONSENT.
Michel Gondry’s new animated documentary on Noam Chomsky, IS THE MAN WHO IS TALL HAPPY?, had its premiere at DOC NYC in advance of a run at the IFC Center. At the New York Times, Gondry narrated a scene from the film, while Eric Kohn of Indiewire interviewed the director. R. Kurt Osenlund did the same for Filmmaker Magazine, while Gondry was interviewed by Zachary Wigan for the Tribeca Institute’s blog. At Nonfics.com, Daniel Walber reviewed the film, while Christopher Campbell shared a list of Gondry’s five favorite docs.
Adam Benzine of Realscreen reported on the awards winners from the DOC NYC festival, with A WORLD NOT OURS from Mahdi Fleifel winning the grand jury prize in the festival’s Viewfinders section. Daniel Walber penned a review of the festival film TOXIC HOT SEAT, and another of the film TOWN HALL. At Filmmaker Magazine, Scott Macaulay interviewed I LEARN AMERICA directors Jean-Michel Dissard and Gitte Peng. Also, Sarah Salovaara of Filmmaker Magazine interviewed director Grace Lee about her film AMERICAN REVOLUTIONARY: THE EVOLUTION OF GRACE LEE BOGGS. The staff at Indiewire also extracted 10 filmmaker tips on hiring a publicist from DOC NYC panels.
Director Errol Morris speaks at the DOC NYC screening of his new film, The Unknown Known.
This week the DOC NYC Festival officially kicked off its fourth year in New York City with a screening of Errol Morris’ new Donald Rumsfeld film THE UNKNOWN KNOWN. Writing for the POV blog, Tom Roston recapped the screening. At his Docutopia post for the SundanceNOW, Anthony Kaufman wrote on some of the films screening at DOC NYC, including THE PUNK SINGER and PATROLMAN P. Director Jeremy Xido penned a guest post on his film DEATH METAL ANGOLA, which screened at DOC NYC, for Filmmaker Magazine. Also at Filmmaker Magazine, Scott Macaulay named his 10 favorite picks for the festival, as did Lauren Wissot at the same publication. The folks at Indiewire also shared 10 of their top choices. And Daniel Walber reviewed DOC NYC film THE FINAL MEMBER for Nonfics.com.
The Women and Hollywood blog on Indiewire played host to a series of interviews with female filmmakers screening work at the DOC NYC. Inkoo Kang spoke with Dori Berinstein, Sarah McCarthy and Ky Dickens. Melissa Silverstein chatted up Sini Anderson, Suzan Beraza, Samantha Grant, Gitte Peng, Dawn Porter, Therese Shechter, Linda Hoaglund, Lucy Kostelanetz, Merete Mueller, Beth B, Sierra Pettengill and Jamila Wignot. And at Filmmaker Magazine, Randy Astle spoke with WEB director Michael Kleiman.
Earlier this morning, Canadian documentary filmmaker Peter Wintonick passed away from a rare form of liver cancer. Adam Benzine had the details in a piece at Realscreen, while Peter Knegt reported the news for Indiewire. Wintonick was in the midst of making the film BE HERE NOW when he passed. For those interested in helping the film reach its completion, please go here.
BRITDOC named THE ACT OF KILLING the winner of this year’s PUMA Impact Award, handed out to the film determined to have had the most substantial positive impact over the past year. Sarah Salovaara covered the event for Filmmaker Magazine, while Christopher Campbell did the same for Nonfics.com. Bryce J. Renninger looked at some of the metrics turned out b BRITDOC on the award nominees.
This week, Netflix acquired the first-run rights to the film THE SQUARE, strengthening their move into acquiring documentary content.
Netflix continued to grab newshole with the official announcement that it had acquired first-run rights for Jehane Noujaim’s film on the Egyptian revolution, THE SQUARE, as an “original documentary.” Alison Willmore of Indiewire had the news, as did Adam Benzine of Realscreen and Brian Stelter of the New York Times. At Filmmaker Magazine, Sarah Salovaara wondered what Netflix meant, exactly, by describing THE SQUARE as “original programming.” Shortly after announcing its acquisition of THE SQUARE, Netflix revealed that it had picked up another doc, THE SHORT GAME. Again, Alison Willmore reported the news for Indiewire, while Adam Benzine did the same at Realscreen. At the Los Angeles Times, Steven Zeitchik took the temperature of a handful of doc filmmakers on Netflix’s recent moves.
This week the Cinema Eye Honors announced the nominees for its awards; the honors are set to take place in January 2014. Christopher Campbell covered the announcement at Nonfics.com, while Peter Knegt had the news for Indiewire and Adam Benzine did the same for Realscreen. The POV blog used the nominations to rejigger its list of the best documentaries of 2013 thus far.
The documentary filmmaker Ed Pincus, perhaps best known for his film DIARIES, passed away this week at the age of 75 from leukemia. William Yardley penned an obit of Pincus for the New York Times, while Paula Bernstein remembered Pincus in a post for Indiewire.
This week Stranger Than Fiction is playing host to SHOTGUN FREEWAY: DRIVES THROUGH LOST L.A., a film by Morgan Neville about the city of angels. The screening takes place on Tuesday, Nov. 12 at 8 p.m. at the IFC Center in Manhattan, and will be followed by a Q&A with Neville. For more information or to purchase tickets please go here.