BBC - Mark Kermode's film blog

Tuesday, 3 July 2012

Final Major Project: The "connected" Documentary Genre

Documentaries by their nature are already connected, collaborative, participatory, and interactive, at least in some ways. However I am looking to produce a documentary project that engages viewers via interactive tools — from customising the experience depending on when and where it is accessed, to providing a “choose your own adventure” structure. This isn’t your typical documentary. I want to make the most of technology and the web and create a film that can constantly update itself with breaking information, movies that are built and shaped by users, and interactive narratives that let viewers chart their own path. This could call for a collaboration with different courses at UCA including: BA (Hons) Advertising & Brand Communication BA (Hons) Graphic Design: New Media BA (Hons) CG Arts & Animation Here are examples of the "Connected" Documentary I found online: 18 days in Egypt A Collaborative Documentary Project about the Egyptian Revolution. 18 Days in Egypt is a crowd-sourced interactive documentary that will feature thousands of videos, photos, e-mails and tweets created by participants and eye witnesses. The project’s goals are to provide tools for Egyptians to tell the story together–from their perspective– create a robust user experience and a living documentary that contributes to the dialogue around democracy in the 21st century. The Tillman Story "Creating a interactive version of the film The ending of the movie tends to engage people to act. The audience asked how to engage. That's why they decided to create an interactive edition of the feature film. The movie's based on a huge amount of archives with a lot of scribbling in the margins. Filmmaker tried to recreate this experience of margin annotation. The feature films plays in the center of the frame and is surrounded by a group of widgets. The widgets break down in four categories. Updates, outtakes, documents and forums Updates. Allows to show updated information about the subject Outtakes. Filmmaking is building a story and sheer away everything that does not fit in the story. In the end you have a lot of good material on "the cutting room floor". Especially for this film, some of the most incendiary information was not included in the final cut. Documents. The ability to visualize the 350 (and more) pages of document the film is based on. Forums. Live chats and annotations in the documents"
Emerging technologies like HTML5 and WebGL liberate film from the constraints of runtime—and there are storytelling opportunities that have yet to be explored or even imagined. Imagine how the web could supercharge documentary filmmaking, for instance. B-Roll that was once discarded can now find a useful half-life on the web. Virtual spaces can be created and explored on the web, leading to new understandings. Data can enrich a story and help untold stories emerge. Viewers can contribute time, money, and attention to help expand documentary projects. Subjects can be represented in more intimate ways than ever before. This working group will survey some of the possibilities in web-native documentary. Four projects will serve as case studies, and the participants will help the projects with practical advice to help get them off the ground.

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