December 14, 2016 | POV’s daily list of essential reading for the documentary and independent filmmaking community.

How an Award-Winning Documentary Was Allegedly Blacklisted by Netflix
But what’s less talked about, beyond the mountains of cash Netflix dishes out for premium content, is when a filmmaker inevitably decides he or she doesn’t want to make a deal with Netflix. It may not happen often, but in one case, turning down a Netflix Original deal seemingly led a filmmaker’s movie to be blacklisted from ever being shown on the streaming giant.
Read more | Business Insider »

Notes on Truth (Or, Documentary in the Post-Truth Era)
Since Election Day, many in the documentary community have been asking the question, “What do we do now?” The most common response is, “We need to make great politically-engaged films.” I hope a lot of people do exactly that; I might even do it myself. Okay, I probably won’t. My answer is a lot more basic: we need to love, seek and defend truth.
Read more | Filmmaker Magazine »

Nancy Hamilton Broke Documentary Barrier
The list of documentary Oscar winners over the past 60 years has included women filmmakers, demonstrating that while the world of feature narrative films remains much too largely a boys’ club, docs have long been a great place where women contribute, compete and win.
Read more | Variety »

Bear Witness — But Then What?
Journalists and the public have a responsibility to bear witness — but then what? In the coming year, I hope we can develop a better framework for processing this information, much of it visual, all of it heartbreaking. We should understand the risks of watching violent or traumatic imagery, and balance that against the need to look at the world as it is, not how we wish it would be. There needs to be calls to action, or at least discussion, that give meaning to the reams of primary documents.
Read more | NiemanLab »

‘The Bad Kids’ Documentary: Heartbreak and Hope
High school students with no hope of earning a diploma are the subject of Bad Kids, a new documentary that spotlights Black Rock Continuation High School in California. Filmmaker Lou Pepe and school principal Vonda Viland discuss how the documentary was made and how students struggle to overcome personal and educational obstacles.
Read more | WSJ Video »

HBO Announces Multi-Part Muhammad Ali Documentary From Director Antoine Fuqua
Antoine Fuqua and LeBron James are partnering on a multi-part Muhammad Ali documentary for HBO. The untitled project will be directed by Fuqua (Training Day, The Magnificent Seven) and follow the life and career of Ali, who passed away at the age of 74 earlier this year.
Read more | IndieWire »

Upcoming Festivals and Deadlines
This Week

  • Deadline: CPH DOX 2017 Submission Dec 15
  • Deadline: SXSW 2017 Film Festival Submissions Dec 16

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POV Staff
POV (a cinema term for "point of view") is television's longest-running showcase for independent non-fiction films. POV premieres 14-16 of the best, boldest and most innovative programs every year on PBS. Since 1988, POV has presented over 400 films to public television audiences across the country. POV films are known for their intimacy, their unforgettable storytelling and their timeliness, putting a human face on contemporary social issues.