The latest in Video Journalism and Nonfiction Filmmaking: Video Consortium Screening Recap

In an age where “alternative facts” and “post truth” are almost accepted parts of the political landscape, what is the role of nonfiction film? At KitSplit, we think that nonfiction content and video-journalism are more important than ever before. At a time when the media and truth itself seem to be under attack, it is crucial to honor the people who are working to uphold the highest standards of journalism and maintain their rights (and all of our rights) to freedom of speech and information—the essential right to know what’s actually going on in the world.

That’s why we were thrilled to host the March gathering of The Video Consortium, a creative community of the world’s leading video journalists and nonfiction filmmakers, which promotes and fosters socially-conscious, thought-provoking storytelling for a new era of media.

We co-hosted this event at the KitSplit HQ, the majestic Hearst Tower. The night began with mingling, drinks, and snacks, following by screenings of a few curated nonfiction shorts (and excerpts from feature films) and a casual Q&A by the filmmakers and finally, drinks at a nearby bar.

Check out the films shown:

Cathryne Czubek and Hugo Perez: Lights Camera Uganda (Excerpt)

Welcome to Wakaliwood, the Wakaliga village outside of Uganda’s capital, Kampala, and the birthplace of the over-the-top, no-budget action movies produced by maverick Ugandan filmmaker Isaac Nabwana.

Fascinated by Isaac’s movie trailers on YouTube, film nerd Alan Hofmanis gave up his life in NYC and moved to Uganda to work and live alongside Isaac. He not only became a Ugandan action movie star, but also Isaac’s producer and promoter. The film is currently in production.

The DP of Lights Camera Uganda is Emmy-award winning KitSplitter Matt Porwoll—rent his gear here!

Graham Roberts, The New York Times: Modern Games

The New York Times transports you to some of the iconic Olympic moments, from Babe Didrikson’s paradigm-shifting victories in 1932 to the nearly superhuman feats of gold medalists like Bob Beamon and Usain Bolt. The Times collaborated with The Mill, a visual effects and content creation studio, to transform archival imagery into historical settings our viewers can visit. The piece was originally made with stereoscopic VR headsets in mind; for the screening, we used old-school 3d glasses to approximate the 3d feel!

Erin Lee Carr: Mommy Dead & Dearest (Excerpt)

Things are not always as they appear, especially in the case of Dee Dee and Gypsy Rose Blanchard. Child Abuse, mental illness, and forbidden love converge in this mystery involving a mother and daughter who were thought to be living a fairy tale life that turned out to be a living nightmare.

What starts out as a grisly tale of matricide morphs into a rabbit hole of deception and unrelenting abuse, journeying towards the truth about what happened that night. Featuring exclusive access to Gypsy from prison and a trove of police interrogation tapes, medical records, and secret conversations, this HBO Documentary Film is a disturbing, first-hand look at a life arrested and the consequences of trying to keep someone young forever. A literal gasp went through the audience at the beginning of this excerpt, and we can’t wait to see the full film when it comes out in May!

Gabriel Nussbaum, SupermarchéA Brief History of John Baldessari 

John Baldessari is an artist who is perhaps most famous for putting colored dots over the faces of subjects in photographs, although he has also done other things ranging from sculptures to text on canvas. This short film interviews and explores him as a man and an artist – sort of. This piece, which went viral and has become iconic in the video profile world, was made by the production company Supermarché and directed by Henry Joost and Ariel Shulman (who are best known for the documentary Catfish). Gabriel Nussbaum, who wrote the script, joined us.

Thank you all for coming out to support these fantastic films! If you’re a video-journalist or nonfiction filmmaker interested in joining The Video Consortium, you can apply here.

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