Hello everyone. Just thought I'd drop in to introduce myself. I'm Douglas Dougan (or Doug Doug to some people!). I'm based in the UK and found the D-Word through a mix of contacts. I'm friends with Lara, who has a sister company with Ben and I've met Doug Block too when he came to do a masterclass in Edinburgh. I don't know if you remember, Doug, we were making the short documentary about the girl with the terminal illness hiding out in the Scottish Highlands. I recall you liked the look of the cinematography we had. Anyway, the film has been doing quite well, we got nominated for a Scottish Documentary Award with it. Working now on bigger projects, one of which might be filming and co-produced in America. Looking forward to discussing it with people here on the site – co-production is a new game for me so I'm sure there will be a lot to talk about.
Hi Doug Doug! Yes, I remember your short very well, it was quite extraordinary. So glad you've made your way to The D-Word at last. This will be a helpful resource for you in your co-production efforts and I'm sure you'll have very useful things to contribute, as well. All my best to Lara next time you see her.
Brent E. Watkins
I too have come to the conclusion life is simply too short not to return to my childhood dream.
In reply to Ben Kempas's post on Tue 25 Nov 2008 :
Thanks for asking. Michael Haneke was one of my chief inspirors on "Big Easy Life," the movie I just made. I shot the scenes (it's completely verite) in long takes, with designs on covering each scene with one shot. After I was done shooting, right before I began editing, I saw "Code Unknown" (the Haneke epic with Juliette Binoche and many other incredible actors), and this gave me the great energy I needed to be confident that this just might work. And it does work (I think!). Thus, the connection between Haneke and I [documentaries]. But I'm sure there are many more....
Thanks. CODE UNKNOWN is great.
hello d-word peeps i was at IDFA recently and heard about the d-word dinner after the event so i'm here to make sure i see y'all at the next one.
me- producer, london based, started out on Marc Isaacs' first film Lift as his AP and have been working with the band Saint Etienne on their film projects for the past 5 years. Recently produced short documentary collaborations between composers and filmmakers for BRITDOC and between poets and filmmaker Nick Parish for the Tate gallery
looking forward to meeting you in due course!
Welcome, Andrew. Make sure to apply for full membership. It's free but not automatic.
Hi All – My name is John Aldrich, and I'm a producer/editor/shooter, currently working on a series for Nat Geo Music called 'Geo Sessions.'
I studied film at the University of Texas and got a Master's in Doc Filmmaking at the Documentary Institute at the University of Florida.
I've been at National Geographic for five years and counting, and am in my 3rd season (45 epis and counting) with Geo Sessions, which is a very basic interview and performance show (but a lot of fun to do). We've done shows with a really wide variety of artists – Ben Harper, Habib Koite, Gogol Bordello, Blind Boys of Alabama, MV Bill... the list goes on. It currently airs on Nat Geo Music (and sometimes the Int'l Channel) in parts of Europe, Asia, the Middle East, South America... but no US or UK carriage yet.
I'm also currently at work with fellow D-Word member Jason Osder on a doc called 'Let The Fire Burn' and last year was the Senior Producer/Online Editor for a film we did at Nat Geo entitled 'His Holiness the Dalai Lama Speaks: Peace and Prosperity,' which was at TriBeca and Telluride.
Glad to be on the 'boards!
hello, my name is Taylor Gentry. I am a full time DP and part time documentary film-maker. In 2007, I shot my first feature length doc, The Greening of Southie. This film aired on the Sundance Channel in March of 2008, and is still playing on Starz doc I've heard. I got hooked up with the production team after interning for them on the feature-length, doc King Corn. I have recently set up shop in Brooklyn and have been shooting a variety of things, both fiction and non. I am also psyched to be behind the camera on the next film in production by Wicked Delicate called The City Dark – www.wickedelicate.com. I look forward to connecting with other documentary film makers out there.
sounds like a cool show, John.
so you work in house for NGTandF? what percentage of the shows on natgeo channel would you say are produced in house VS a coproduction?
Welcome, John. And Taylor, feel free to become a full member ...
Wicked Delicate does great work--and kudos for the camerawork on THE CITY DARK. I saw a trailer for it at Independent Film Week back in September. It looks fantastic and I can't wait to see the completed film.
I am a documentary filmmaker and media professional. My principal engagement right now is as a program director with a media funder affinity group called Grantmakers in Film + Electronic Media (GFEM.org). We are preparing to launch an online media database, which we hope will be of service to media makers, advocates and funders alike. If all goes well, I hope to be able to share more details about this public interest initiative (which is free) late next week.
Hi Doug. I met you with Peter yesterday at the Jacob Burns Center's Open House. I am an Independent filmmaker, specializing in documentary films and videos for both broadcast television and non-broadcast. My latest project of significance was a historical documentary on the Pequot War of 1636-1637, for which I was co-producer, co-director, and co-writer with Guy Perrotta. I also was co-cinematographer (parts were shot on 16mm film), videographer, and editor. Entitled "Mystic Voices: The Story of the Pequot War", the film received two 2004 EmmyÂ® Awards from The National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences for Best Documentary and Best Writing. I also was co-nominee with Gary Maynard for Outstanding Achievement in Videography/Cinematography. The film, which received the IDA/Kodak Project Access Grant, currently is in national distribution through American Public Television and The Cinema Guild.
I also have produced other documentary programs for local public television stations, including "The Eleventh North Texas Irish Festival", "The Thirteenth North Texas Irish Festival", and "River Lab: Environmental Awareness for All Seasons", a documentary on a grassroots environmental education program in Connecticut.
Hey there, Charles. Good to meet you again online. And happy to have you aboard. Greetings to Pamela, as well.
My name is Ryan Polomski and I am a documentary filmmaker from Austin, Texas. Recently arrived to California and interested in making contacts in the area. I've produced/directed a feature documentary that premiered at SXSW called "State vs Reed" about a man on death row, as well as two travel pieces (one in Guatemala "Hecho A Mano: Tres Historias de Guatemala" and one in Turkey, as well as numerous 1/2 pieces for a regional network in Central Texas. I have photography credits through the Sundance Channel, Atlantic Records; producing/editing credits at the New York Times. Would ideally like to pitch varying ideas here in LA to produce and direct, but would be excited to work on any interesting project or company in a different capacity (editor/shooter/PA/writer/researcher). Specially interested in short form web-based non-fiction series. I'll leave my number in case anyone has immediate interest or advice. 512-417-2685
The Los Angeles Film Festival showcases the best of American and international cinema. Drawing an enthusiastic audience of over 85,000, the Festival provides films with the opportunity to be embraced by the public and discovered by the industry.
More than 100 feature filmsâ€”narrative and documentaryâ€”are featured in the Festival, alongside gala premieres, panels and seminars, short film programs, music video showcases, archival presentations, and more. The Festival is also a qualifying festival for Film Independentâ€™s Spirit Awards and the Narrative and Animated Short Film categories of the Academy Awards.
As much as we admire and respect the LA Film Festival, we don't recognize organizations as members here. So come out come out whoever you are (as an individual, that is). And welcome, Ryan. Feel free to apply for full membership
[Julie has agreed to modify her profile so it displays her name]
Good, then welcome, Julie. Now we just ask that you don't double post. As you'll find out, The D-Word is much more about conversation than promotion.
My name is Andy, and I am a first time film maker. I am co-directing a non-profit documentary project with Jamie Pearce, entitled Breaking the Silence [working title]. This film works to expose over a decade of Genocide of Falun Gong practitioners in Mainland China under the Communist regime. It has been running for around three years now, and is coming towards the end of production. We are working with Kevin Macdonald (Director: One Day in September, Touching the Void) as our Executive Producer, with Ben Lester (Assistant Editor: Touching the Void) as our Consulting Editor. We need as much support as possible, so it is wonderful to become a member of D-Word, and get to speak to you all. If you would like to know more, or can share advice or insights, then please don't hesitate!
Hi Andrew, welcome!
I recently joined the D-word and I'm excited to be apart of this online community. I'm currently producing/directing a documentary entitled Cloak & Hacker: Realities in a Virtual World. We're examining the magnitude technology has taken a hold of America and hoping to enlighten the public of the dangers associated with it.
I've worked on docs before but I'm finally producing my own work. It's similar to being a parent (from what I'm told), you never know what it's like and how much is involved until you have your own.
I'm looking forward to sharing and discussing experiences and industry issues!
A big welcome to Andrew & Lisa!
Good to have you both with us here. Welcome aboard.
Hello everyone. My name is Landon, I'm a doc maker/shooter/editor based in New York. I am currently finishing up my second full-length film 'Good Fortune' (almost 4 years in the making!) about the unintended consequences of foreign aid to Africa. I've received a tremendous amount of support from the documentary community over the years, so I'm really thrilled to join you all here. I also run a small filmmaker group in Brooklyn based on weekly peer workshops (www.brooklynfilmmakerscollective.com), so any Brooklyn or NYC filmmakers please get in touch!
Hey Landon – great to see you in here! How's the film shaping up?
a warm welcome, landon.
'bout time you joined us landon. welcome!
Pam Harris with Grantmakers in Film + Electronic Media. Glad to be here.
Pam – that's a very auspicious organization name. Welcome!
Hi Pam, welcome! I'm a big fan of GFEM's work.
And likewise (as a former curator for Council on Foundations Film Fest). Welcome.
Thanks so much for the warm welcome! I'm still getting familiar with the site. I want to share a new fundraising tool that we have just launched. Where should I post that?
Thanks James, Doug, and Chris. The film's coming along well, we're very close to locking picture and busy looking for a premiere. I'm still kicking around the idea of doing a short blast of narration at the head to help frame the film, I don't suppose anyone could recommend an advisor to me help write narration??
Pamela – suggest in "Finding Funding – North America" If you want non-members to see it, you may also want to put it in the Public Classifieds.
Agghh, Erica! I just told Pam not to double post and now realize YOU encouraged her!!! Welcome, Pam, and remember not to listen to anything Erica says and you'll be fine ;-)
Kitroom Monkey Limited are based in the Famous Ealing Film Studios, West London.
Established in 2000 by industry professionals KRM is more than just a hire facility.
We care about our clients and will always try to advise to the best of our knowledge to enable you to make informed choices.
Our tag line is â€˜Here to help in the media jungle !â€™ and never has this been more true than now.
So many formats and cameras â€“ it makes your head spin !
We offer a huge variety of equipment on dry or wet hire:
Crews â€“ DOPâ€™s / Ops / Assts / Runners / Sound Recordists / Editors and anything else you may need
HD / SD /DVCam / Minidv cameras
We have worked on many diverse projects â€“
Films â€œHow To Lose Friends & Alienate Peopleâ€
Light Entertainment â€œScrapheap Challenge x 4 seriesâ€
TV Dramas â€œPrime Suspect 7â€
Promoâ€™s / Corporates / Awards and Conference set ups.
Dear "Kitroom Monkey", please see our email regarding the requirement to sign up as an individual with your full real name. Thanks...
Hi everyone â€“ Hope you are all well.
I am a young documentary film maker from Ireland, I have been making a Hip-Hop documentary 'Peace, Love, Unity and Havin' Fun' for the last 3 / 4 years. I feel it has international appeal and would be of interest to a lot of young people.
Discover and learn about cross-community relationships, Northern Ireland and the global phenomenon we call Hip-Hop.... (http://www.sub-cultureproductions.co.uk)
Its my first film so I would be grateful for some advice on what I should do next now that its nearly finished.
Here is a Trailer
Hi, I'm Bal;a sound recordist from the UK, interested in getting involved with documentaries. Please feel free to contact me, if you need help on future projects.Good to see Kitroom Monkey here (we've worked on Scrapheap together!).
Hello all, I've just joined The D Word community. I'm Sarah from Devon in England and am currently ending the pre-prod stage of a 3-part 60m documentary series entitled HEMP FOR VICTORY II – the sequel. This is the first commercial programme my newly-formed company has made with its all-new team/crew. I have funding yet to source, but it's all looking good. Anyone in the local area want to say hello/join in the fun? It's all currently unpaid, but I hope that will change... http://www.necessaryproductions.com/page4.html
Welcome to all (including the anonymous monkey). Baldev and Sarah, feel free to go one step further and sign up for full membership . It will give you access to all the discussion topics here. Kitroom, you too when you come out of the closet.
In reply to Doug Block's post on Wed 17 Dec 2008 :
Doug, know you were teasing, but for new folks who haven't caught on yet to our sense of humor here, I do believe that there is an option for members to post something in the Public Classifieds about an event, screening, call for submissions, etc. if they want to reach a wider audience than just those in the members-only area. That said, I made my suggestion before seeing that Pam had gone ahead and posted in those two topics plus one or two others. So good that you clarified that.
And welcome again Pam, as well as Oliver, Chris, Baldev, and Sarah. Great to have you on D-Word.
(Doug is very strict)
It's called tough love. And you behave yourself too, young man.
Monkey has become Oliver Hickey! Welcome! (And Sarah and Baldev and everyone else!)
Hi everyone, I'm Jenn. I've worked as a runner and assistant on short films but I have a passion for documentaries and just want some advice on how to carry on and succeed!
Your question is too general to get more than a very broad and unhelpful answer, like "Never Give In, Never, Never, Never."
If you have specific issues with a project, it's more useful to address those.
But with documentaries, the general rule of thumb is that to make them as your main occupation is never easy and rarely financially rewarding. So the only reason to do it is that you really, really like to make documentary films.
Or you have a subject you really really want to make a documentary about.
Or both. Hopefully both.
jenniffer, if you're just getting started on the rather long and arduous road of filmmaking, here's a couple places to start:
1) watch a LOT of documentary films, not only modern-day ones but especially some of the older docs. if you google "top-ten documentaries", you'll find a lot of lists from which you can begin watching. there are a lot of different styles of documentary, so pay attention to whichever style suits your personality best.
2) read Michael Rabiger's "Directing the Documentary". there's quite a few doc books out there now (one by Hampe, another by Rosenthal), but Rabiger's is the best by far. a local library might have it, but most bookstores won't.
3) find a subject that you are absolutely passionate about. don't pick a subject that you think OTHER PEOPLE will find interesting – it has to be interesting and compelling to you, enough so that after three years of shooting, and two years of editing, you will still persevere with it.
4) Go to a local community college (or whatever they have in the UK) and take some cheap camera and editing courses. you don't have to become a pro at either, but you do have to understand the basics of proper technique.
5) Good luck!
Hi Everyone, I just joined D-Word. I am a director/editor living in NYC and am now working on my first feature length documentary, which I am co-directing with a good friend of mine. Since I've known the filmmaking and specifically documentary filmmaking process only through the work I do in the cutting room, I am sure we're going to have lots of questions in the coming months. We are super excited about the project and truly believe in the importance of it. The film is about a Navajo family's journey to understand their children's rare genetic disorder, which forces them to live and die in the shadows. In their quest for knowledge they uncover the disease's connection to the dark past of American colonialism.
Welcome, Maya. Good luck with the film, sounds like a powerful one.
In reply to Maya Stark's post on Fri 19 Dec 2008 :
Is the disease best described as an allergy to light? (Just curious, because the wife of Helmut Kohl, Germany's chancellor who reigned during reunification and until 1998, could not stand light – it caused her excruciating pain – and committed suicide because of it. I'd never heard of this before.)
Thank you Doug :)
Jo-Anne, the disease is called Xeroderma Pigmentosum (XP). It is not an allergy to light or sunlight. Although some people would describe it as an allergy, it is a major misconception. It means your skin is incapable of repairing itself from UV radiation because of an enzyme deficiency, which means even if you're out in the sun for a few minutes you can develop skin cancer. The family we are following has the Neurodegenerative variant of XP.
Hi all. Just realizing I don't think I ever introduced myself here, so figured I'd take the opportunity. After slaving in the commercial world and working in production for several series' and a couple doc features, finally got the nerve to get my own project off the ground. With a small grant from a non-profit, covering equipment costs, and an entire crew backing out one by one as they realized the reality of where we were shooting (a year in an Argentine shantytown) I managed to survive the shoot as a one-man-band, juggling between camera & logistics.
For those interested, a trailer can be seen here:
Currently, I'm working on getting a distribution sales rep, submitting to festivals, etc. And as that's moving forward, prepping things to get a couple other projects off the ground.
Glad to be a part of the community and looking forward to help when I can. It's truly a breath of fresh air to see a group of people all in the same fight, willing to share info to help those of like mind. Unfortunately, all too uncommon in the production world.
Welcome, Ethan, and thanks for finally introducing yourself. We should follow up on this in the Marketing and Distribution topic, but you'll find that sales reps generally won't be interested in taking you on until you get a premiere at one of the top festivals (Sundance, Toronto, Tribeca, etc).
I am looking to make documentaries on wildlife and habitat conservation issues in India. Would like to link up with like minded people. I have an identified project and would like to execute it in March 08 if everything goes ok.
Oops I meant March 09!
In reply to Baldev Rayat's post on Wed 17 Dec 2008 :
Merry Christmas! I would like to get some input from you on sound recording for documentaries...if you don't mind. What would be the best equipment to use for a documentary where I need to capture sound outdoors? Is it best to get one where it is integrated with the camera or better to get an external recorder? If so which one?
Thanks ever so much for your help,
Regards, (my email – email@example.com)
Record to the camera for ease of editing, especially if you are just beginning. Less equipment to handle. Unless of course, you just want wild sound, then you can use a digital recorder like the Zoom H2 or H4. Input with a good mic like a Schoeps. If you have the budget then a Sound Device 702
Welcome, Prabha. So you know, all questions should be posted in the Mentoring topic. This is just for introductions.
Well, here I am, on the D-word at the urging of my friend, Tanner Wolfe. I own a film production company called Dusk Films. I am transforming it into a non-profit. Exciting times. I hope to contribute to the site as much as possible and I hope to learn from all of you as well. I love community stuff and I love film.
Welcome, Aaron. You're gonna want to sign up for full membership to get the full benefit of the topics here.
My friend Doug Block has been urging me to join d-word for years! I am happy to finally be here. I have always enjoyed the community of documentary film makers when I have been at film festivals. So now I guess I have that community on tap.
I am amongst other things, a documentary film maker. Having made films about OTHER people I am currently making two films which include MYSELF.
I was trained as an ethnographer – one who uses their own self as an instrument of understanding the world view of others. Although I tell my own story on stage – in a performance called Two Men Talking – the enterprise or telling my story on film is one of the most challenging I've ever undertaken.
Perhaps there are those of you out there in the same boat.
either on the stage or in the boat. I find it difficult when I have a foot in each, though elastic underwear has made this almost achievable.
Welcome at last, Murray, but you're only halfway here. You now need to sign up as a full member to gain access to all the discussion topics.
Murray is a being a bit humble, as usual. He made a terrific feature documentary called "Paternal Instinct" that I'm proud to say I co-produced. And he was nominated for an Academy Award (with Roger Weisberg) for the short, "Why Can't We Be A Family Again?" And he's a total sweetheart of a homo sapien.
Welcome, Murray! I saw "Paternal Instinct" a couple of years ago and was completely blown away – it's still one of my favorite films ever!
Hi All, just joined the d-word this week, not sure why it took so long! I run a fledgling documentary production company, and am obsessed with all things documentary. Currently working on finishing a feature length doc 2 years in the making, about a kibbutz in Israel. I'm looking forward to learning and contributing at the d-word.
Welcome, Ben. Do share more about your film in the Members Films topic. I had a chance to see the rough cut and am only sorry that timing did not work out to screen it at Docs In Progress.
Hi Erica, I will do that. Didn't have enough time to work on it to submit it again for January, but we are hoping to re-submit for the March screening. By the way, the new Docs In Progress website is great!
I'll let Adele know you want to be considered for March and I guess you spilled the beans on something I wanted to announce in the Member's Websites topic so follow me there.
my name is Issar Shulman,I'm a musician.I do specially like documentary movies and for the music I wrote for the film "To die in Jerusalem" I was nominated for an Emmy award in September 2008.
I had a great experience working with HBO,editor Geof Bartz and director Hilla Medalia.that is the cause for my decision to move to NY in March and try to make as much connections I can.
you can hear some of my music in my web site
hope for inspiring collaboration in the documentary realm and feel free to ask me for music suggestions if you are looking for music to your movies.
In reply to Issar Shulman's post on Mon 5 Jan 2009 :
Welcome Issar! I just listened to your samples. Very impressive. I'm positive you'll be making connections here. In my opinion this is one of, if not, the best forum for documentary filmmakers/musicians/whatever out there.