1. Top Indies in iTunes: With select documentaries on sale in the iTunes store (and "Dirty Wars" a 99-cent Movie of the Week pick), it's not surprising that docs -- including new additions "Artifact," "Smash & Grab: The Story of the Pink Panthers" and "Red Obsession" -- dominated the list of top indies in the iTunes store this week. See the full list here.
2. Web Documentaries: POV hosted a Twitter chat devoted to the world of web documentaries. Participants discussed how to get started making web docs, how to find collaborators and create social impact. POV created a Storify about the event. Check it out here.
3. First Rites: Bill Mechanic, AMC CEO Gerry Lopez and Village Roadshow’s Robert Kirby have partnered on First Rites, a web portal for first-time filmmakers, Variety reports. The free site, which was "designed for filmmakers who are yet to acquire international distribution and for their early films to be discovered and appreciated," was launched by Milt Barlow.
4. Pitch Your Short Doc: Inspired by recent docs "American Promise" and "Brooklyn Castle," POV has partnered with Storyhunter, the online video journalism studio,
to commission a series of short web documentaries about the
achievements and challenges of young black males in the United States. POV and Storyhunter will be greenlighting four-to-10-minute documentaries
that will premiere on POV's website and video apps, and stream on the
sites of Storyhunter's international partners. Find out more about how to apply (by Dec. 20) here.
5. "The Short Game:" Netflix will make its debut into the world of original documentaries with "The Short Game," its second nonfiction film acquisition (after "The Square") and its first to be premiered exclusively on the streaming service (on Thursday, December 12 at 3:01 a.m. ET,) our TV editor Alison Willmore reports. This doc about an under-seven golf tournament won the audience award at SXSW in March and is directed by Josh Greenbaum, who also created and helmed Hulu's original docuseries "Behind the Mask."