The Act of Killing by Joshua Oppenheimer was one of the films that screened at True/False this year.

The Act of Killing by Joshua Oppenheimer was one of the films that screened at True/False this year.

The focus of much of the doc world was in Columbia, Missouri, this weekend for the 10th True/False Film Fest. At the POV blog, Tom Roston recapped his experience, explaining how the festival’s idiosyncrasies add up to a great film experience. Roston earlier in the week had also described why True/False is a standout among festivals. For a look at news that came out of the festival, you can head over to the news section of their website.

LEVIATHAN from directors Lucien Castaing-Taylor and Véréna Paravel got a great press bump in advance of the theatrical release of the film this weekend at the IFC Center. Writing for Filmmaker Magazine, Robert Greene shared his take on the film, describing it as the “progeny of direct cinema, experimental film and ethnography,” while Anthony Kaufman of the SundanceNOW blog considered some of the film’s horror genre-like qualities. At the Documentary Channel blog, Christopher Campbell spoke with Castaing-Taylor, while Indiewire’s Eric Kohn spoke with both Castaing-Taylor and Paravel. Rich Juzwiak of Gawker also had an in-depth look at the film, and Forrest Cardamenis of The Film Stage and Melissa Anderson of the Village Voice both reviewed the film.


The Tribeca Film Institute this week announced that the Tribeca Film Festival would open with MISTAKEN FOR STRANGERS, a film following the rock band The National on tour from director Tom Berninger. Karen Kemmerle had the news for Tribeca’s website, as did Dave Itzkoff at the New York Times’ Artsbeat blog and Adam Benzine of Realscreen. Also on Tribeca’s site this week was a post from Joe Reid identifying common documentary subject archetypes.

In his ReelPolitik piece for Indiewire, Anthony Kaufman reported that the filmmakers behind CAPTURING THE FRIEDMANS had found evidence that could overturn the conviction of Jesse Friedman, one of the subjects in the film.

Writing for Indiewire, Heather Croall had the latest installment of the ongoing discussion over the potential obligations that festivals had to filmmakers that was sparked by Sean Farnel a few weeks ago.

Critic J. Hoberman in the New York Review of Books had a great piece on the life and work of Chris Marker.

In noting its release of Jean Rouch’s film CHRONICLE OF A SUMMER the Criterion Collection blog Current posted a video interview with anthropology academic Faye Ginsberg on what, exactly, verite means.

Indiewire’s Kevin Jagernauth shared a new excerpt of the Omar Mullick and Bassam Tariq film THESE BIRDS WALK, set to premiere at SXSW next week. And at the Documentary Channel blog, Christopher Campbell rounded up a few trailers worth checking out.

David Licata of Filmmaker Magazine posed five questions to A FIERCE GREEN FIRE director Mark Kitchell.

POV’s parent company American Documentary was in the news this week after it was named the recipient of a MacArthur Award for Creative and Effective Institutions. Erik Hayden of The Hollywood Reporter had the details.

At Realscreen, Kevin Ritchie reported that David France’s Oscar-nominated film HOW TO SURVIVE A PLAGUE had been optioned by ABC Studios for a possible dramatic mini-series. Lacey Ross of The Hollywood Reporter also had the news.

At the NPR blog The Salt, Allison Aubrey reported on A PLACE AT THE TABLE, a film by directors Kristi Jacobson and Lori Silverbush that considers the phenomenon of food insecurity and hunger in the U.S., as did Mari-Jane Williams of The Washington Post.

Joëlle Pouliot of the DocGeeks blog this week interviewed social issue documentarian Christopher Hird on his documentary past and its relation to the practice of investigative journalism.

POV this week published an interactive chart listing the best documentaries of 2012, sortable by a number of criteria.

Writing for Filmkommentaren.dk, Tue Steen Müller previewed the spring season of the NYC iteration of the Flaherty Seminar.

The Fledgling Fund this week announced its grantees, with AFTER TILLER by Martha Shane and Lana Wilson and ALL OF ME from director Alexandra Lescaze among those films showered with funding.

Gizmodo’s Peter Ha this week reported his run in with what was claimed to be a crew with Google Glass shooting a documentary, a claim he was dubious about considering the device is not yet available for sale to the public. But it provided an interesting insight into what the future of documentary production could look like.

In the UK, Emma Wigley, writing for The Guardian, shared her advice on crafting an interactive documentary. And at the POV blog, Emma Dessau interviewed Filmmakers Julia Reichert and Steven Bognar about their web documentary REINVENTION STORIES.

In distro news this week, Mike Fleming Jr. of Deadline reported that The Weinstein Company had acquired rights to the film SALINGER about reclusive author J.D. Salinger, by filmmaker Shane Salerno. Fleming also had the news that Rat Documentary Films had snagged North American rights for Roman Polanski doc WEEKEND OF A CHAMPION.

With the Miami Film Festival underway, Michael Rosen of the Miami Herald reviewed TWENTY FEET FROM STARDOM from director Morgan Neville, while Clara LaVelle of Miami New Times had details on the film’s opening night screening. Hans Morgenstern also reported on Swedish director Lasse Hallström’s return to the festival for the Herald.

Michael Rosser of Screen Daily reported that online distribution platform Distrify and documentarian online forum The D-Word had expanded their partnership.

At the What (Not) to Doc blog, Basil Tsiokos provided an overview of the One World International Documentary Human Rights Film Festival, which takes place in Prague in the Czech Republic March 4 – 13.

Christopher Campbell has a roundup of noteworthy theatrical releases which includes (of course) LEVIATHAN, as well as A FIERCE GREEN FIRE and GENIUS ON HOLD.

That’s it for this week, but please send any tips or recommendations via email here, or send them by Twitter to @GuerrillaFace. Thanks, and have a great week!

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