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Documentary Storytelling

Documentary Storytelling
Your Price: $42.50 CDN
Limited Quantities
Author: Sheila Curran Bernard
Publisher: Focal Press
Format: Softcover
# of Pages: 368
Pub. Date: 2010
Edition: 3rd
ISBN-10: 0240812417
ISBN-13: 9780240812410

Out of Print - Limited Quantities

About the Book:

Filled with real-world examples drawn from the author's career and the experiences of some of today's top documentarians, Documentary Storytelling has been updated and improved, with new case studies and conversations with award-winning filmmakers including Alex Gibney (Taxi to the Dark Side), James Marsh (Man on Wire), and Deborah Scranton (The War Tapes).

Subtitled Creative Nonfiction on Screen, this book has reached filmmakers and filmgoers worldwide with its unique focus on the single most important aspect of documentary media-making: storytelling. Drawing on the narrative tools of the creative writer, the unique strengths of a visual and aural media, and the power of real-world content truthfully presented, Documentary Storytelling offers advice for producers, directors, editors, and cinematographers seeking to make ethical and effective nonfiction films, and for those who use these films to educate, inform, and inspire. Special interview chapters explore storytelling as practiced by renowned producers, directors, and editors. This third edition has been updated and expanded, with discussion of newer films including Waltz with Bashir and Why We Fight.

What people say:

"…a perfectly timed winner in a much-neglected area. True to the nature of the beast, the book is more about filmmaking as a whole, and how and where storytelling weaves into the overall process. It succeeds in covering every aspect without belabouring any. Not only does Bernard write from the viewpoint of an award-winning filmmaker (she's a writer, director and producer), but the last 100 pages include extensive interviews with a wide range of acclaimed documentarians." — Canadian Screenwriter Magazine

"With the availability of high-quality affordable cameras and editing equipment, documentary filmmakers today enjoy a freedom in shaping their films that their counterparts a decade ago couldn't have imagined. As the new aesthetic is shaped, Sheila Curran Bernard's brilliant and effective [book] aims to guide the Errol Morrises of tomorrow with great advice and practical knowledge that every documentarian would benefit from….. the best reason to own this book is the 100-plus pages Bernard dedicates to interviews with 10 filmmakers who work in the documentary world….[T]he filmmakers' insights into the process of creating compelling nonfiction stories will inspire anyone with a yearning to make documentaries to get off their duffs and do it." — BackStage

"Bernard is keenly aware of the power of persuasive images, and her insistence on complexity and integrity is a consistent theme throughout the book." — The Independent

"What a valuable aid to documentary filmmakers. The importance of a topic won't cut it if the story isn't told well and Bernard's book cuts right to the chase." — Paul Stekler, producer/director of George Wallace: Settin' the Woods on Fire

"Sheila Curran Bernard's Documentary Storytelling is an essential, pragmatic, common-sense approach to making non-fiction films for the student and/or first-time filmmaker, based on the author's deep awareness of documentary film history and theory, and her intimate knowledge of how today's most important documentarians formulate their works." — Gerald Peary, film critic, The Boston Phoenix

"Sheila Curran Bernard's ability to dissect a wide range of narrative approaches and explore the elements that make dramatic stories so compelling make this guide invaluable for documentary filmmakers as well as anyone who uses information and evidence to portray real events. But the value of this book goes beyond its service to story tellers; the consumers of documentary films and all journalism can benefit by more fully understanding the narrative structures that we all use to construct order and meaning in the world." — Pennee Bender, Media Director, City University of New York

About the Author:

Sheila Curran Bernard is an Emmy and Peabody Award-winning filmmaker and the author of Documentary Storytelling, a best selling guide to story and structure in nonfiction filmmaking, and a guide to using archival footage and material in films. Over the past twenty years she has played a leading role in creating, developing, and overseeing projects for national and international broadcast, theatrical release, and museum and classroom use. Her teaching career includes appointments at Westbrook College and Princeton University. She is currently on the faculty at the University at Albany, State University of New York.