My look at DOC NYC 2014 continues with an overview of this year’s Special Events, signature selections with notable special guests:
DOC NYC Special Events
ABOVE AND BEYOND
Director: Roberta Grossman
Revealing the hidden history behind the creation of Israel’s air force.
Expected to attend: Nancy Spielberg (Producer)
BACK ON BOARD: GREG LOUGANIS
Director: Cheryl Furjanic
This strikingly candid profile explores the triumphs and tragedies of Olympian Greg Louganis, considered by many the greatest diver of all time.
Expected to attend: Cheryl Furjanic, Will Sweeney (Producer), film subject Greg Louganis
BANKSY DOES NEW YORK
Director: Chris Moukarbel
Last October, when infamous street artist Banksy revealed his New York City residency, he set off a daily scavenger hunt among curious fans, would-be art collectors, and, of course, the police.
Expected to attend: Chris Moukarbel, Jack Turner (producer)
ENQUIRING MINDS: THE UNTOLD STORY OF THE MAN BEHIND THE NATIONAL ENQUIRER
Director: Ric Burns
Serving up a sensational exposé in line with his juicy subject, acclaimed multiple-Emmy Award-winner Ric Burns uncovers the strange history of the National Enquirer and the tabloid’s legendary publisher, Generoso Pope Jr.
Expected to attend: Ric Burns
I AM BIG BIRD: THE CAROLL SPINNEY STORY
Directors: Dave LaMattina & Chad Walker
SESAME STREET’s Big Bird may be one of the world’s most recognizable characters, but far less familiar is Caroll Spinney, the man who has brought to life the yellow-feathered Muppet—as well as the irascible Oscar the Grouch—since 1969.
Expected to attend: Dave LaMattina, Chad Walker, Clay Frost (Producer), film subjects Caroll and Debra Spinney
AN OPEN SECRET
Director: Amy Berg
Every year, thousands of children swarm Hollywood in search of fame, but what they often find under the surface is a deep and disturbing underbelly of manipulation and abuse.
Expected to attend: Amy Berg
SOUL BOYS OF THE WESTERN WORLD
Director: George Hencken
Spandau Ballet, one of the bands that defined the 1980s, tell their own story, set against a backdrop of evocative period footage, including never-before-seen home movies.
Expected to attend: George Hencken, film subjects Spandau Ballet
Why You Should Attend:
DOC NYC’s spotlight films, the Special Events afford audiences an opportunity to engage with Oscar-nominated directors like Amy Berg, Emmy-winners like Ric Burns, and pop culture icons like Spandau Ballet, Greg Louganis, and Big Bird.
Roberta Grossman has previously tackled Jewish themes in her acclaimed films BLESSED IS THE MATCH: THE LIFE AND DEATH OF HANNAH SENESH and HAVA NAGILA: THE MOVIE. In her new documentary, ABOVE AND BEYOND, she partners with producer Nancy Spielberg, the youngest in the clan that includes brother Steven, whose past projects include producing the PBS-broadcasted ELUSIVE JUSTICE: THE SEARCH FOR NAZI WAR CRIMINALS, and consulting on the Oscar-winning short doc CHERNOBYL HEART.
BACK ON BOARD is Cheryl Furjanic’s second feature following 2008’s Slamdance-debuting SYNC OR SWIM, another water-sports focused project. She previously served as an associate producer on the Sundance award-winner BLUE VINYL. This project marks Will Sweeney’s first as producer following an associate producer credit on THE ROYAL TENENBAUMS. Greg Louganis participated in the 1976, 1984, and 1988 Summer Olympics, famously sweeping the male diving events in both of the latter games.
Chris Moukarbel’s debut, ME @THE ZOO_, premiered at Sundance in 2012 and was broadcast on HBO, who went on to produce his series, SEX // NOW, as well as this new film on Banksy. Jack Turner is an Emmy-winning producer whose nonfiction credits include RACING DREAMS, WHICH WAY HOME, YOUSSOU NDOUR: I BRING WHAT I LOVE, and Moukarbel’s work.
Ric Burns is best known for his eight-part PBS series NEW YORK: A DOCUMENTARY FILM. He collaborated with brother Ken Burns on the acclaimed PBS series THE CIVIL WAR as producer and writer, and earned Emmys for ANDY WARHOL: A DOCUMENTARY and EUGENE O’NEILL: A DOCUMENTARY FILM.
I AM BIG BIRD’s Dave LaMattina, Chad Walker, and Clay Frost previously collaborated on BROWNSTONES TO RED DIRT, which toured festivals between 2010-2011. Spinney’s decades portraying the iconic SESAME STREET characters have been recognized with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, four Daytime Emmy Awards, and a Lifetime Achievement Award from the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.
Amy Berg earned an Oscar nomination for her first documentary, DELIVER US FROM EVIL, which screened at the Los Angeles and Toronto film festivals, and won the New York Film Critics Circle Awards. Her sophomore film, WEST OF MEMPHIS, debuted at Sundance and went on to Toronto and London, among other events.
SOUL BOYS OF THE WESTERN WORLD marks George Hencken’s directorial debut after producing several of Julien Temple’s documentaries, including LONDON – THE MODERN BABYLON, REQUIEM FOR DETROIT?, and OIL CITY CONFIDENTIAL. Spandau Ballet had a string of UK chart-toppers in the 1980s. Bandmates and brothers Gary and Martin Kemp notably began acting careers with 1990’s THE KRAYS, shortly before the band split. DOC NYC’s screening will mark the first time the band has appeared in NYC since 1983.
To purchase tickets, click on the individual titles above, and follow links for ticketing; or check out the new options for Passes.