Joshua Oppenheimer.
Joshua Oppenheimer.

It was a great year for documentary film, and Indiewire was fortunate enough to catch up with three directors who brought exceptional stories to the screen this past year. 

READ MORE: Spotlight on director and producer Penn and Teller for "Tim's Vermeer"

Penn and Teller ("Tim's Vermeer"), Gabriela Cowperthewaite ("Blackfish") and Joshua Oppenheimer ("The Act of Killing") speak about how they came upon their three very different documentary films. While Cowperthewaite was drawn to the unique and untold stories of Sea World tragedies, Oppenheimer reveals how he "stumbled upon" the horrific genocide that occurred in Indonesia.

READ MORE: Spotlight on director Joshua Oppenheimer for "The Act of Killing"

Over the last two months, we've featured many of the awards season's best actors and directors, as selected by Indiewire editors, and honored them with original photography by Daniel Bergeron and video shot by our partners at Movies On Demand. Check out all of them here.