Introductory Notes for Web Resources, Directing the Documentary

This website contains six groups of supplementary information for users of Directing the Documentary. Most are in Microsoft Word for easy amendment by teachers but some are in PDF, to avoid misquotation:

  1. Projects. These are designed for easy download and teacher amendment. Some include support notes and illustrations, and many have outcomes assessment forms attached, whose usefulness is discussed in Teaching Notes. The projects divide into five groups:
    1. Analysis (for understanding, dissecting, analyzing purposes)
    2. Development (for building the structure and content of films)
    3. Budgeting (for estimating project costs)
    4. Shooting (for developing production proficiencies)
    5. Postproduction (for assessing, structuring, and generating recorded content)
  2. Online Films: Excerpts from Legacy and Omar and Pete are by courtesy of the Academy Award nominatee Tod Lending of Nomadic Pictures. DVDs are available at
  3. Production checklists These prompts, grouped under Preproduction, Production, and Postproduction, list “do’s” and “don’ts” for each phase of production. Print them out and use them as checklists for what you must either cover or avoid. They will also alert you to any of the book’s resources that you’ve overlooked. Use the TOC or Index to locate whatever you need.
  4. Filmography All films cited in the book are listed in title order, with country of origin and year of release. Anything unlikely to be available is marked with an asterisk.
  5. Project forms: These include camera and sound logs, as well as Personal Release and Location Agreement forms.
  6. Teaching notes: These discuss teaching documentary and ways in which Directing the Documentary can be used under different academic conditions, in particular distance learning. This will be useful to anyone teaching a production class, and especially so to anyone doing so for the first time. Many issues are presented in FAQ format.
  7. Distance Learning notes: These discuss teaching and learning documentary remotely in classes held online rather than in-person. Ideas for structuring curriculum and optimizing communications are outlined.


Online Film Examples

      Production Checklists


      Films marked * are thought not to be in distribution. Samples of many works can be found through their title or director at YouTube (

      Download (PDF)

      Teaching Notes