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Documentary

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    REVIEW | Troublemaker: Erik Nelson's "Dreams with Sharp Teeth"

    In a 1978 essay, Harlan Ellison enumerated what he deemed "The 3 Most Important Things in Life": Sex, Violence, and Labor Relations. Such a succinct list doesn't encompass all of the writer's many facets -- Ellison the political activist, Ellison the anti-anti-intellectual, Ellison the (self-describ...

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    REVIEW | Everything Is Deracinated: Nina Davenport's "Operation Filmmaker"

    Thanks to a steaming pile of liberal-minded good will, Muthana Mohmed, a 25-year-old aspiring filmmaker was brought from Baghdad to the Czech Republic to intern on the set of an American movie production. Muthana received the invitation after having been spotted in an MTV-produced documentary about ...

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    6th Silver Docs Fest Offers 108 Films From 63 Countries

    The 6th annual SILVERDOCS documentary film festival announced its programming for its June 16-23, 2008 event, which takes place in Silver Spring, MD,. The festival will present 108 films representing 63 countries selected from 1,861 submissions with six world, eight North American, six U.S. and seve...

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    indieWIRE INTERVIEW | "Bigger Stronger Faster*" Director Chris Bell

    After making an award winning short film just after graduating from USC's School of Cinematic Arts, Chris Bell makes his feature directorial debut with the documentary "Bigger, Stronger, Faster*." As one might imagine, the characteristics of the steroids subculture are imbedded in a few pieces of th...

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    iW NEWS | IFP Selects Doc Lab Projects

    On Thursday, organizers of IFP's Independent Filmmaker Lab announced the ten documentary projects selected to participate in the event. Created to support independent projects before they submit to film festivals, the program brings first-time feature filmmakers to leading industry mentors through its Documentary Lab in May and its Narrative Lab in June. The selected projects include Cambria Matlow and Morgan Robinson's "Burning in the Sun," Augusta Palmer's "The Hand of Fatima," Geralyn Pezanoski's "Mine: Taken By Katrina," Ngawang Choephel's "Ocean Song and Dance," Troy Word's "The Presence of Joseph Chaikin," Xavier Marrades Orga's "The St...

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    indieWIRE INTERVIEW | "Hollywood Chinese" Director Arthur Dong

    Documentary director Arthur Dong has been working since the early 1980s, when one of his first shorts, "Sewing Woman," was nominated for an Academy Award. Since then, he has directed a series of docs on political and social issues, including 1994's Peabody Award winning "Coming Out Under Fire" and 1997's Sundance favorite "Licensed To Kill," which took a chilling look at the lives of people convicted of violent hate crimes against gay men (Dong himself was a victim of gay bashing in 1977). His latest work, "Hollywood Chinese," goes in a different but certainly not less imperative direction, examining the placement of Asian-Americans in Hollyw...

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    DOC COLUMN | Arts Engine Celebrates 10 Years

    Ten years can either be a blip or an eternity depending on your perspective. The year 1997 saw President Bill Clinton inaugurated for his second term, James Cameron's "Titantic" was the top movie and a book about a young wizard named Harry Potter first hit shelves. It was before the Internet stock bust and "information superhighway" was still a promise. The world of documentary in the U.S. was one of foundation funding, public television broadcast and educational distribution with precious few docs breaking into any kind of commercial success. It was in that entrenched world that then-new filmmakers Katy Chevigny and Julia Pimsleur felt like ...

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    iW NEWS | THINKFilm Makes Theatrical & Home Video Deal for "Roman Polanski" Doc

    U.S. theatrical and home video rights to Sundance '08 doc "Roman Polanski: Wanted and Desired" have been acquired by THINKFilm from HBO, which acquired the title at the festival in January. "Polanski" will have its international premiere at the upcoming Cannes Film Festival. HBO will air the film on June 9th, and THINK will launch a theatrical roll out beginning July 11 in New York. Directed by Marina Zenovich, the film spotlights the the public scandal and private tragedy that drove the legendary director from the United States more than 30 years ago. "Marina's film is one of the best documentaries I've seen in years," commented Urman in a s...

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    iW NEWS | Hot Docs Leaps In Attendance, Awards "Root"

    The Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival finished up Sunday, with a record-breaking attendance of 85,000, a 25% increase over last year. The 11 day festival screened 172 films from 36 countries. "The success of this year's Festival is a testament to our audiences," said Executive Director Chris McDonald in a statement. "Their passion for docs and investment in the Festival is inspiring. Filmmakers love screening their work in this city." The festival announced most of its juried awards Friday, but two awards were announced Sunday, including the Hot Docs Audience Award, which was awarded to Lisa Merton and Alan Dater's "Taking ...

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    Nonfiction Campaign: Can Errol Morris's "Standard Operating Procedure" Break the Political Doc Deadl

    Election years are typically strong for political documentaries. Capitalizing on citizens' hunger for issues that the mainstream media is either ignoring or mishandling, audiences flock to theaters to get a deeper sense of what's going on in the world. At least that was the thinking in 2004, with th...

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