What is transmedia and why should documentary filmmakers pay attention to it? This session is about what it means to be a filmmaker in a cross-media world. We will explore best practices and practical tools of audience engagement and art-making across platforms. The director of POV Digital, Adnaan Wasey, will walk through what ‘transmedia’ implies for your work process and his expertise in working with many top and emerging documentarians in the online space. Paired with Wasey, Bayeté Ross Smith from the acclaimed transmedia project Question Bridge: Black Males, which seeks to represent and redefine Black male identity in America, will discuss how and why the project expanded into multiple platforms.
Adnaan Wasey (http://adnaan.com/) is director of POV Digital, the Webby Award-winning interactive department of the acclaimed PBS documentary series POV, and owner of Science Bistro, the maker of Festology and other social apps for businesses. As a former editor and manager, Adnaan has contributed to some the nation’s most prestigious news and information brands, including PBS NewsHour and WNYC New York Public Radio, and was a founding editor at the local digital news organization DNAinfo.
Bayeté Ross Smith is an artist, photographer, and educator living in New York City. He is represented by beta pictoris gallery/Maus Contemporary. He began his career as a photojournalist with the Knight Ridder Newspaper Corporation. Bayeté has exhibited with organizations and institutions such as the San Francisco Arts Commission, the Brooklyn Museum, the Oakland Museum of California, MoMA P.S.1, Duetsche Bank, Rush Arts Gallery, the Leica Gallery, the Utah MOCA, the Patricia Sweetow Gallery, the Goethe Institute (Ghana), and Zacheta National Gallery of Art (Poland). His collaborative projects “Along The Way” and “Question Bridge: Black Males” have shown at the 2008 and 2012 Sundance Film Festival, respectively. His work has also been featured at the Sheffield Doc Fest in Sheffield England and the L.A. Film Festival.
Penny Lane has been making award-winning documentaries and essay films since 2002. Our Nixon is her first feature-length documentary, which world premiered at Rotterdam, had its North American premiere at SXSW, won the Ken Burns Award for “Best of the Festival” at Ann Arbor, and was selected as the Closing Night Film at New Directors/New Films. She is a Creative Capital grantee and was named one of Filmmaker Magazine’s “25 New Faces of Independent Film” in 2012. Her films have screened at Rotterdam, AFI FEST, Hot Docs, Full Frame, Rooftop Films, MoMA’s Documentary Fortnight and many other venues. She has been awarded grants from Cinereach, TFI Documentary Fund, LEF Foundation, NYSCA, Experimental Television Center, IFP and the Puffin Foundation. She has taught video and new media arts at Hampshire, Williams and Bard Colleges.
A nuts-and-bolts professional development series designed for the beginning or intermediate documentary filmmaker, Documentary Fundamentals @ UnionDocs is six-week course culminating in a certificate of completion. Registrants can also attend individual sessions. This curriculum developed out of our experience hearing what fundamentals documentarians need to understand to plan, produce, and release an independent documentary today.
Hosted by filmmaker and educator Penny Lane (Our Nixon), Documentary Fundamentalsis essential learning for the documentary filmmaker, covering business basics, fundraising and financing, production and post-production strategies, transmedia campaigns, sales and distribution models. Each session features guest speakers sharing tips and secrets of the trade, with an emphasis on real-life case studies and best practices. Guests include Oscar-winning filmmakers and producers (Yael Melamede, My Architect, Inocente); Emmy-winning editors and sound designers (Andy Grieve, Standard Operating Procedure, The Carter; Tom Paul, Under African Skies,The Fog of War); and representatives from top funders, film sales companies, distributors and more.
Documentary Fundamentals is designed for beginning or intermediate filmmakers with projects in any stage of development or production (even the daydreaming stage!). Sessions combine formal presentations with extensive time for in-depth discussions with participants.
Registrants completing all six sessions will receive a Certificate of Completion, and will have special opportunities to promote their projects within the UnionDocs network. Specific guests and topics are subject to change. Doors will closed at 7:15 and we will being each session promptly at 7:30pm.
4/21 | Planning Your Documentary
4/28 | Financing Your Documentary
5/12 | Editing Your Documentary
5/19 | Your Transmedia Campaign