Weekly Roundup: Cinema Eye, Sundance and More

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This week, we take a look back at the Cinema Eye Honors, a look ahead to the Sundance Film Festival and give POV fans a second look at The Way We Get By.

Cinema Eye Award Statues

The Cinema Eye Honors took place last Friday, and by all accounts, it was a brilliant evening! Doc Soup Man Tom Roston wrote about the “glittering docerati” there, and POV intern Alice tells us about playing Mad Libs with Albert Maysles. From elsewhere on the Web, filmmaker and Cinema Eye organizer AJ Schnack had a wonderful night. The Stranger Than Fiction blog has pictures from the festivities. Though Hammer to Nail’s Michael Tully appreciated the awards, he didn’t quite agree with the choice of winners. Meanwhile, the Backrow Manifesto reports on the feeling of community at the awards and the IFC blog rounds up the winners.

The Way We Get By
We’ve got some great news for fans of the POV 2009 film, The Way We Get By! Because the film was POV’s most watched film online, we’ll be streaming it again — for one week only! You’ll be able to watch The Way We Get By from January 25 through February 1. Bookmark the Watch page on POV’s The Way We Get By site and check back to see the full stream Monday morning. The Way We Get By filmmakers Aron Gaudet and Gita Pullapilly will also be presenting a case study of their film at the New York Foundation for the Arts soon. The film was a highly successful example of how to creatively finance market and distribute a film. Aside from the strengths of the film itself, much of this success hinges on thewaywegetbymovie.com, a website that effectively builds audiences, raises awareness and makes money. Find out how to sign up for the workshop.


The Sundance Film Festival starts next week, and POV’s director of programming and production, Chris White, and Yance Ford, POV’s series producer, will be in attendance. They’ll be blogging and tweeting from Park City. (Make sure to receive all their behind-the-scenes tweets by following @povdocs on Twitter.) There will be lots of films debuting at Sundance, but one of the most fascinating is Howl, starring James Franco as Allen Ginsberg. Howl germinated in the Sundance Documentary Film Program, but then went on to become a fictional film. In an interview, Cara Mertes, director of the Sundance Institute’s Documentary Film Program (and former POV executive director), explains how that came about, and expounds upon the links between narrative and documentary filmmaking.

Attendants at the Winter 2010 Television Critics Association Press Tour got a glimpse at two upcoming POV broadcasts, Food, Inc. (airing April 21, 2010), and The Most Dangerous Man in America: Daniel Ellsberg and the Pentagon Papers. For Food, Inc., filmmaker Robert Kenner, author Michael Pollan (The Botany of Desire and The Omnivore’s Dilemma), journalist and author Eric Schlosser (Fast Food Nation), Troy Roush of Roush Family Farms and the American Corn Growers Association, and POV Executive Producer Simon Kilmurry were in attendance. And for Most Dangerous Man, Daniel Ellsberg, Patricia Marx Ellsberg, co-producer and co-director Judith Ehrlich, co-producer and co-director Rick Goldsmith and Simon Kilmurry discussed the release of the Pentagon Papers in 1971 and the resultant political firestorm. Check out photos of the Food, Inc. and Most Dangerous Man sessions on Flickr. (And stay tuned for exclusive PBS video interviews with many of the producers and film subjects in the coming weeks. Follow us on Twitter for updates.)

The Good Pitch, a forum where filmmakers with social interest docs can pitch their projects to non-profit partners, is taking place on April 27th during the Tribeca Film Festival. Interested filmmakers can apply now. The deadline is February 8.

Ruiyan Xu
Ruiyan Xu
Former POVer Ruiyan Xu worked on developing and producing materials for POV's website. Before coming to POV, she worked in the Interactive and Broadband department at Channel Thirteen/WNET. Ruiyan was born in Shanghai and graduated from Brown University with a B.A. in Modern Culture and Media.