Independent Lens Fan of the Year?

We MUST to share with you an unsolicited comment we just received from a viewer, which basically brightened an already sparkly holiday season for us, and reminded us why we do what we do: because of you. Happy Holidays to all of you – our remarkably intelligent, incredibly multifaceted, and exceptionally good-looking viewers. I just … READ MORE

Behind the Scenes of The Woodmans with C. Scott Willis and Lois Vossen

This week marks the premiere of The Woodmans, a film by C. Scott Willis about a family of successful artists and the fallout from the death of their youngest and most celebrated member. Francesca Woodman was a talented, visionary, and ground-breaking photographer in the late 1970s and early 1980s, and her work is now seen … READ MORE

Whither the Abductees in a Post-Kim Jong-il North Korea?

With news of the death of North Korean dictator Kim Jong-il, we immediately thought of the implications for the Japanese citizens abducted by Kim’s regime and never returned. So we asked Chris Sheridan, who made Abduction: The Megumi Yokota Story with co-director Patty Kim and Academy Award-winning producer Jane Campion, to provide us with an … READ MORE

Movies to Illuminate the Gloom of Kim Jong-il’s Nasty Legacy

As Kim Jong-il’s bizarre reign over North Korea comes to a close and an era of uncertainty for the region under his son begins, we started thinking of the great films we have aired which provide glimpses inside the world’s most totalitarian nation in history. First up, Return to the Border, which aired on our … READ MORE

Celebrating the Arts this Month on Independent Lens!

Well here’s a nice endorsement — PBS President & CEO Paula Kerger pays tribute in this video to Independent Lens’s continued commitment to the arts. We’re featuring two arts-focused documentaries this month, beginning this week with The Woodmans, followed by These Amazing Shadows premiering on December 29. (you can discover the date and time these … READ MORE

The Greatest Movie Montages — Got a Favorite?

Our good friends Kurt Norton and Paul Mariano who produced These Amazing Shadows (which airs on Independent Lens on Dec. 29) have posted a really cool video on their blog about the great art of the movie montage. And that’s apropos, since Vanity Fair described These Amazing Shadows as “film montages to end all montages.” … READ MORE

Two Independent Lens Films Make Oscar’s Documentary Shortlist!

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences today announced its annual “shortlist” of contenders in the category of Best Documentary Feature today, and two upcoming Independent Lens films are on it! They are Hell and Back Again by Danfung Dennis, and We Were Here: Stories from the AIDS Years in San Francisco by David … READ MORE

Behind the Scenes of We Still Live Here – Âs Nutayuneân, with Director Anne Makepeace

Filmmaker Anne Makepeace took some time out to answer a few questions about her film We Still Live Here — Âs Nutayuneân, which premieres on Independent Lens beginning on November 17, 2011 (check local listings for air dates and times on your local PBS affiliate). In tandem with this film, Makepeace collaborated with Cultural Survival … READ MORE

Behind the Scenes of Deaf Jam with Director Judy Lieff

We caught up with filmmaker Judy Lieff, whose film Deaf Jam premieres this week on Independent Lens (check your local listings here). Lieff offers some perspective on the challenges she faced making the film, plus some updates on what the people portrayed in the film have been up to since shooting wrapped. What impact do … READ MORE

Lives Worth Living Director Eric Neudel: Many Voices, One Purpose

We asked Director Eric Neudel about his film Lives Worth Living, which premieres on Independent Lens tonight at 10pm (check local listings). The film follows the formation and journey of the disability rights movement through the signing of the Americans with Disabilities Act in 1990. The movement scored one of the most significant civil rights … READ MORE

Remembering Artist Piri Thomas

Back in 2004, Independent Lens aired the film Every Child is Born a Poet, a portrait of the artist Piri Thomas. Sadly, we learned that Mr. Thomas passed away last week at the age of 83. Richard Saiz, senior programming manager for the Independent Television Service, knew Mr. Thomas and wrote this appreciation. Piri Thomas … READ MORE

Film Locations, Doc Clubs, Hashtags, Oh My!

The Independent Lens audience is spectacularly diverse — in fact it attracts the one of the youngest and most diverse prime-time audience on PBS. So it stands to reason there are many different ways our audience might engage with our films. Some of you have cable, some don’t; some use smart phones, some don’t; some … READ MORE