Farewell 2014; Hello 2015!

A record-breaking year for Kartemquin saw six of our documentary projects have world premieres in 2014: Life Itself at Sundance Film Festival in January. The Homestretch at Hot Docs in April. On Beauty at Chicago International Film Festival in October. The School Project simultaneously on the web, TV and with a live event at Chicago History Museum in October. Almost There at DOC NYC in November. Saving Mes Aynak at IDFA in November. Continued

A Statement from Indie Caucus: Keep the Public in Public Television

A Statement from Indie Caucus, An Organization Of America's Independent Filmmakers // December 19, 2014 KEEP THE PUBLIC IN PUBLIC TELEVISION DON’T LET WNET LEAD PBS AWAY FROM ITS MISSION OF BRINGING DIVERSE VOICES AND ENGAGING ISSUES TO THE PUBLIC WNET’s sudden decision to move Independent Lens and POV off the established 10pm Monday Thirteen/WNET schedule is an outrage. WNET needs to move Independent Lens and POV back on THIRTEEN in primetime, to best serve its public and to set a best standard precedent for the PBS network of stations. Continued

Almost There Chicago Premiere announced for January

On Saturday January 10th at 7:45pm and Sunday, Jan 11th at 3:00pm, Gene Siskel Film Center at the School of the Art Institute will host the Chicago Premiere of Almost There. Get tickets here: http://www.siskelfilmcenter.org/almostthere Almost There is a coming-of-(old)-age story about 83-year-old Peter Anton, an “outsider” artist living in isolated and crippling conditions whose world changes when two filmmakers discover his work and storied past. Shot over eight years, Almost There documents Anton’s first major exhibition, held in 2010 at Chicago’s INTUIT: The Center for Intuitive and Outsider Art, and how the controversy it generates forces him to leave his childhood home. Each layer revealed reflects on the intersections of social norms, elder care, and artistic expression. Continued

Documentary Makers, Help us Fight for Your Fair Use Rights!

The fair use rights of documentary makers are under assault. Here's how we fight back. The International Documentary Association (IDA), Kartemquin, and other organizations are asking for all documentary makers to take this 2-minute survey. The Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) makes it illegal to rip from DVDs, Blu-ray discs, and many other encrypted technologies. The law is blocking our ability to make fair use and could seriously harm documentary filmmaking. Why? Because even though fair use allows us to use copyrighted footage, the DMCA restricts our access to such material. Continued

Driehaus Foundation funds '63 Boycott

The Richard H. Driehaus Foundation has awarded funding of $10,000 to '63 Boycott film, website and social media outreach campaign. We are very grateful to the foundation for this support. '63 Boycott chronicles the Chicago Public School Boycott of 1963 when more than 200,000 Chicagoans, mostly students, marched to protest the segregationist policies of CPS Superintendent Benjamin Willis, who placed mobile school units on playgrounds and parking lots as a “permanent solution” to overcrowding in black schools. The project will offer a modern perspective on the impact and legacy of this forgotten history 50 years later as it reconnects the participants to each other and the event itself. Continued

More awards for Life Itself!

Life Itself has continued its run of year-end acclaim, garnering a nomination for Best Documentary of 2014 from the Broadcast Film Critics Association, and also the following distinctions: Winner: Best Documentary - Chicago Film Critics Association. Winner: Best Documentary - Online Film Critics Association. Winner: Best Documentary - Washington DC Area Film Critics. Winner: Best Documentary - African-American Film Critics Association. Winner: Best Documentary - New York Online Film Critics. Winner: Best Documentary - Boston Online Film Critics. Winner: Best Documentary - Indiana Film Journalists Association. Runner-up: Best Documentary - Los Angeles Film Critics. Nominee: Best Documentary - Detroit Film Critics Society. Nominee: Best Documentary - St. Louis Film Critics. Nominee: Best Documentary - Phoenix Film Critics. Continued

Episode Two of The School Project set for January 22

The second episode of The School Project, a six-part documentary series on public education released in segments over the 2014-2015 school year, will premiere at The University of Chicago's Logan Center at 6:30pm on January 22nd, 2015. The free, public event (RSVP requested) will include a screening of "Chicago Public Schools: Closed,” as well as a presentation on new findings from the University of Chicago Consortium on Chicago School Research on where the 10,000 students affected by the 2013 closings ended up and why. A subsequent panel discussion moderated by Laura Washington of the Chicago Sun-Times will engage the audience in a conversation about the school closings and what Chicagoans can do moving forward. Continued

Hoop Dreams Blu-ray announced for March 31, 2015

The Criterion Collection today announced that they will release the newly restored Hoop Dreams on Blu-ray disc on March 31st, 2015. The Blu-ray is available now for pre-order. Features on the Criterion Collection Hoop Dreams Blu-Ray will include: New digital restoration, with 4.0 surround DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack on the Blu-ray Two audio commentaries: one by filmmakers Peter Gilbert, Steve James, and Frederick Marx, and one by the film’s subjects, Arthur Agee and William Gates "Life After Hoop Dreams", a new documentary catching up with Agee, Gates, and their families Additional scenes, never before released to the public Collection of excerpts from Siskel & Ebert tracking the acclaim for Hoop Dreams Continued