January 18, 2017 | POV’s daily list of essential reading for the documentary and independent filmmaking community.

Perfectly-Timed, PBS Announces the First Documentary Biography of John Lewis, ‘Get in the Way,’ Premiering Feb. 10 (Trailer)
PBS and Georgia Public Broadcasting announced today that John Lewis – Get in the Way, a new documentary produced and directed by Kathleen Dowdey, will premiere Friday, February 10, 2017, 10:30-11:30 p.m. ET (check local listings) on PBS. The first documentary biography of Lewis, whose unwavering fight for justice spans the past 50 years, is part of Black History Month programming on PBS.
Read more | Shadow and Act »

11 Documentaries About Immigrants Everyone Should Watch Right Now
These 11 standout documentaries from the last thirteen years serve as a reminder of the human struggle and spirit that drive many of the immigrants living in the United States. From those who make the dangerous journey across the U.S.-Mexico border to those who fight on the front lines for immigration reform in Congress, these films will help you put a face to an often divisive but important issue.
Read more | Huffington Post »

HBO’s Solitary Confinement Documentary Looks Horrifying
Some 81,000 people are held in isolation 23 hours-a-day in the United States, according to a 2015 report from Johns Hopkins University. Solitary confinement is considered torture by experts and organizations specializing in constitutional law, international law, and psychiatry, among other fields. Yet it is an incredibly commonplace practice in American prisons. In a new documentary, HBO uses unprecedented access to one solitary-happy prison to examine the critical toll a life in near-complete isolation can take on prisoners.
Read more | Esquire »

Cléo Journal Addresses ‘Woeful Lack of Feminist Perspectives’ in Film Criticism
With essays ranging from “A Love Letter to Jennifer Coolidge” and “The Gender-Fluid Fantasy of Adventure Time” to interviews with Kirsten Johnson, Ana Lily Amirpour, and Claire Denis, the Canadian-based journal cléo is an essential source for smart, fresh, and feminist perspectives on film and media.
Read more | IndieWire »

Kirsten Johnson, Robert Greene Receive Grants From Rooftop Films (Exclusive)
Kate Plays Christine director Robert Greene and Cameraperson director Kirsten Johnson are among the filmmakers who will receive cash prizes from Rooftop Films. Greene will be awarded a monetary grant of $15,000 to help finish his new film, Bisbee ’17, and Johnson will receive a $10,000 grant to support her upcoming film, Deadpan. Rooftop Films is a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting and showcasing the work of New York City filmmakers and musicians. As part of its mission, Rooftop provides grants to filmmakers, rents equipment at low-cost to artists and non-profits, and organizes film screenings.
Read more | Variety »

The 50 Most Anticipated American Films of 2017
This list culls together the American films that I’m most fervently anticipating in 2017. I’m also looking forward to catching a number of 2016 festival films that I’ve not yet had a chance to see (including James Gray’s The Lost City of Z, Ana Lily Amirpour’s The Bad Batch, Theo Anthony’s Ratfilm, and Xander Robin’s We Are Not Cats), but for the sake of continuity I’m only including films here that have not yet premiered anywhere. The ones that remain completely open books.
Read more | Filmmaker Magazine »

Upcoming Festivals and Deadlines

This Week

  • Deadline: Edinburgh International Film Festival Submissions Jan 18
  • Sundance Film Festival Jan 19 – 29
  • Premiers Plans – Angers Film Festival Jan 20 – 29

Next Week

  • Sundance Film Festival Jan 19 – 29
  • Premiers Plans – Angers Film Festival Jan 20 – 29
  • Deadline: Magnum Foundation Photography and Social Justice Fellowship
  • Deadline: 2017 BAVC National MediaMaker Fellowship Applications

Get more documentary film news and features: Subscribe to POV’s documentary blog, like POV on Facebook or follow us on Twitter @povdocs!

Published by

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.