Get doc insight from those who know with Capturing Reality: The Art of Documentary. The film features over 30 filmmakers from 14 countries (Albert Maysles, Errol Morris, Werner Herzog, more) sharing their passion for documentary and talking about the artistic and ethical choices they make. The movie is making the rounds on the festival circuit, but you can purchase the DVD that comes with hours of bonus interviews. The film's extraordinary website also features tons (really, tons) of well-organized clips from filmmakers talking about the craft and a downloadable educational guide. (via Capturing Reality site)
Lowry Digital has completed the initial phase of the restoration of footage sent back to Earth from Apollo 11, including man's first steps on the moon, as part of the 40th anniversary celebrations of the mission this month. NASA commissioned Lowry Digital to restore roughly two-and-a-half hours of material that astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin captured during their 1969 expedition. The preliminary restoration includes highlight sequences such as Armstrong's famous descent of the ladder and the planting of the American flag. The overall restoration is ongoing, and images will continue to be refined, with a planned completion in September. (via NASA's website)
Operation Homefront has teamed up with The Way We Get By, a documentary about three senior citizens who serve as airport troop greeters (see the trailer here), to give children of military families school supplies. In the spirit of service, the producers of the movie are encouraging attendees to donate new school supplies to Operation Homefront's Backpack Brigade program. Backpack Brigade distributes backpacks full of school supplies to military children of all ages who need a little help preparing for the school year. Items can be dropped off at each screening of the movie or to any Operation Homefront chapter. (via The Way We Get By site)
Think things are tough now? Try the '30s on for size. PBS's American Experience will premiere The 1930s, a five-part mini-series that examines America's response to the unprecedented economic crisis, high unemployment, and environmental catastrophe that threatened the nation during one of history's most tumultuous decades. See a preview video here. (via PBS)
The Sundance Institute will receive a $5 million grant for its Documentary Film Program to help raise awareness on human rights, the Open Society Institute announced. "Films can play a powerful role in inspiring action on human rights, justice, accountability, and other open society issues,” said Aryeh Neier, president of the Open Society Institute. "The Sundance Institute’s work helps filmmakers shed light on the most pressing challenges of our time." As a dollar-for-dollar matching grant, Sundance Institute aims to raise $10 million over the next five years to support documentaries on significant, contemporary issues. (via Open Society Institute)
Conquest of the Useless: Reflections from the Making of Fitzcarraldo is IDA Award Winner Werner Herzog's diary which recounts the two-year shoot in the jungles of Peru to make the film. Originally published in German in 2004, it's now available in English. Check out this article in The Guardian about it and an excerpt in the NY Times. Then grab it on Amazon.