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The Documentary Interview: Philosophy & Practice

Starts February 25

1 session: Saturday, February 25, 10 am–6 pm

This workshop is for filmmakers of all levels seeking a greater understanding of the power—and limitations—of the interview for their documentary. In this interactive workshop you’ll learn about the hows and whys of interviewing for documentary films. With examples from films throughout the history of documentary, we’ll first discuss the roots of the interview form itself and the conventions of framing and editing someone else’s words and image. Then we’ll put the philosophy into practice by taking turns on both sides of the camera, experimenting with different setups. We’ll cover the gear to use during an interview (lights, sound, support, etc.), what kind of exchange you can have with your subject(s), and the difference between a one-on-one versus multi-person interview setup. We’ll also discuss different styles and helpful tips for editing an interview into a story. Students are encouraged to bring footage and/or transcripts from their own projects to share. There is a lunch break.

Tuition: $175 regular/$130 member/$100 low-income

michael-reanoMichael Reano is an independent filmmaker and artist. He received his BA in Radio/TV/Film from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and his MFA in Film Production and Film Theory/History from Ohio University. He has made more than 20 films and videos over the past 40 years. His work has been shown at film and video festivals nationally. He has taught film/video courses at Columbia College in Chicago, as well as colleges in Massachusetts, Nebraska, and New Jersey. His work has also been showcased locally as part of TPT’s MNTV program.

Reano was a recipient of a Minnesota State Arts Board Artist Initiative Grant for his documentary, 24 x 24. He has also taught film classes locally for IFP MN, St. Scholastica, Minnesota School of Business, and Minneapolis Community Technical College. He also received a Jerome Travel and Study grant in 2010 during which he spent time with artist James Benning of California Institute of the Arts. Currently he works in freelance video production. Reano is the director of a soon to be released short film written by film critic Michael Wilmington, The Night of the Shrieking Dead. He also continues to work on 24 x 24, a feature-length documentary about film critic Michael Wilmington.

Class Registration Guidelines & Cancellation Policy

  • Space is assigned on a first-come basis. Registrations must include payment in full to be valid. Registrations are accepted beyond registration deadlines as long as space is available.
  • If minimum enrollment has not been reached by 5 days prior to the start date of a class, IFP MN may cancel it, in which case registrants will immediately be notified and receive a full refund by PayPal or charge card credit (for phone or in person credit card registrations) within 5 business days. A check will be issued for registrations that were paid in cash. In lieu of a refund, students have the option of applying their tuition to another course if scheduled in the same calendar year.
    For those wishing to cancel a registration prior to the class registration deadline, 100% of the tuition will be refunded minus a $25 administrative fee. For registration cancellations received after the registration deadline but prior to the first class session, 50% of the tuition will be refunded minus a $25 administrative fee. As of a class start date, no refunds or credits/exchanges will be given.
  • Tuition is not prorated for missed class sessions.
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February 25, 2017
10:00 am - 6:00 pm
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Michael Reano
Registration Deadline
February 24, 2017
Maximum Enrollment
Civi Event ID
Class count or Info
1 session: Saturday, February 25, 10 am–6 pm