A world of possibilities

The D-Word virtual doc community launches its first collaborative film project, initiating a new mode of documentary coproduction.
June 14, 2001

Essays on Documentary, a series of eight, five-minute shorts on various aspects of non-fiction filmmaking, is set to stream on the San Francisco-based Docuweb site for one year, beginning June 20. Coordinated by the D-Word online discussion forum for doc-makers – which currently consists of over 250 members from 14 different countries – the individually financed project takes a first-hand look at the art, business and technology of non-fiction filmmaking from the perspectives of different D-Word members.

The first of several web-based ventures planned by the D-Word community, Essays was developed, produced, and will now be exhibited exclusively online. Docuweb will also be directing viewers to a discussion forum dedicated to the project. Says Doug Block, D-Word’s creator, ‘The beauty of it being online is that it links right to discussions that we’ll be having, which [participating] filmmakers will be online for.’

While the project was completed in the collaborative spirit spawned by the D-Word community, and the goal of the collaboration was simply to produce an entertaining and informative film, the foundation has been laid for future cooperative efforts between members. Says Block, ‘While some members are collaborating among themselves, we’re not looking to become an official production entity. Rather, our aim is to provide a safe, comfortable and fun place for people who work in documentaries to hang out and meet each other, share information, and shmooze. Working together was just a natural outgrowth of that.’

To view the shorts, see next week’s RS Plus for the Docuweb link

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