In a week where Oscar pervaded our minds and the Independent Spirit Awards remind us that Hollywood and what the industry considers the indie film scene no longer seems to have an accurate dividing line, we’re left ruminating on the tragic loss of another beloved member of the documentary film community in Bruce Sinofsky. Known for co-directing the PARADISE LOST trilogy, BROTHER’S KEEPER, and METALLICA: SOME KIND OF MONSTER, among others, Sinofsky passed away in his sleep early Saturday morning at age 58 due to complications stemming from diabetes. The news came directly from his friend and collaborator Joe Berlinger via a post on Twitter. Brent Lang of Variety reported the news, as did Tim Kenneally for The Wrap, various staff at Indiewire, Sam Barsanti for A.V. Club, and Fandor’s David Hudson. At Loudwire, Chad Childers relayed a statement from Metallica on the loss of their “family member”.
As you’ve certainly heard by now, last night the Oscars proceeded without a hitch and the Film Independent Spirit Awards transpired the day prior, both of which saw Laura Poitras, and her documentation of the watershed moments in which Edward Snowden revealed the ongoing secret espionage campaigns of the US government in CITIZENFOUR, continue their historic sweep of critical acclaim by taking home the awards for Best Documentary. Snowden himself reacted to the news of CITIZENFOUR winning an Oscar via Lauren Duca of The Huffington Post. Andrew Pulver of The Guardian, Dave McNary at Variety and Daniel D’Addario of Time reported on the Oscar news, while, writing for The Atlantic and The New Yorker respectively, Conor Friedersdorf and Amy Davidson ruminate on why CITIZENFOUR’s win matters and remains much deserved. As reported by The Hollywood Reporter, director Ellen Goosenberg Kent and producer Dana Perry won the Oscar for Best Documentary Short with their film CRISIS HOTLINE: VETERANS PRESS 1. News of the Independent Spirit Awards win came in via Fandor’s Keyframe , Variety, IONCINEMA’s Eric Lavallee, as well as Indiewire thanks to Katie Walsh.
Tomorrow, the Winter ’15 season of Stranger Than Fiction continues with directors Ian Olds and Garrett Scott’s 2006 Independent Spirit Truer than Fiction Award winner, OCCUPATION: DREAMLAND. Ian Olds will be on hand for a post-screening Q&A.