Sheffield Doc/Fest Podcast


What happens when documentaries attract the attention of Hollywood? In 2014, some great British documentaries have crossed over to the movie business. Leading directors, producers and lawyers share their experiences. Havana Marking’s remarkable Smash and Grab: The Story of the Pink Panthers is now slated to be directed by Danny Boyle as a feature adaptation. Salma, the central contributor from Kim Longinotto’s acclaimed film of the same name, is doing a deal direct with a LA film producer for the rights to her story. And Peter Armstrong, Partner, Harbottle and Lewis has done several complex movie deals on high profile life story titles including Wikileaks, Julian Assange. We hear gripping accounts of the process and also discuss the ethics and rights when selling ‘real life’. Do documentaries and feature films make easy bed fellows…or is it a minefield?

Direct download: From_Fact_to_Fiction_reduced.mp3
Category:TV & Film -- posted at: 11:00am UTC

Chair of Arts Council England and TV innovator, Peter Bazalgette, has championed the importance of the arts to all sections of society, regardless of platform or geographical location, defending public funding of arts and culture for all.

In this session, Peter is interviewed by Anna Higgs, head of Film4.0, who asks him about where film and digital fit into ACE’s plans – in a cross-platform age, how do the traditional boundaries between art forms stand up? What’s the future for interactive and digital arts?

Direct download: Peter_Bazalgette_2014_reduced.mp3
Category:TV & Film -- posted at: 11:00am UTC

Lee Kern brings his one-stop workshop designed to make even the most mediocre filmmakers a force to be reckoned with in the world of independent documentary filmmaking. How to crap on your peers, how to make your subjects cry on camera and then ditch them when you’ve finished – everything you need to know in order to make it to the top is here in this masterclass. You too can become king of the documentary crap heap!

Direct download: How_to_Crap_on_Everyone_Lee_Kern_reduced.mp3
Category:TV & Film -- posted at: 11:00am UTC

Motivator in Chief: Colin Young


Question: What connects Nick Broomfield, Joan Churchill, Kim Longinotto, Molly Dineen, and Sean McAllister to name only a handful? Answer: They were all set on their journey by the man who founded the National Film & Television School- Colin Young. This session explores Colin Young’s influence on this inspirational generation of filmmakers. What will he do to inspire the next? Messrs Churchill, Dineen, Longinotto, McAllister and Broomfield will encourage The Great Motivator to reveal his secrets. What manifesto would he propose to young filmmakers now? 

Direct download: Motivator_in_Chief_Colin_Young_reduced.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:00am UTC

Children at Risk


In BBC2s Bafta- nominated series Protecting Our Children, unprecedented access took the viewer to the heart of the issues facing Britain’s social workers. But it also presented enormous challenges to the programme makers, as well as unusually at-risk contributors. So how did they do it, and what were the pitfalls along the way? Brian Woods, who has himself produced several award-winning films around vulnerable children, talks to the series producer Sacha Mirzoeff as well as contributor and social worker Ben Crang , and director of photography Petra Graf.

Direct download: Children_at_Risk_reduced.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:00am UTC


Want to know how to engage with audiences and create a sustainable career with new distribution and marketing possibilities? Come to this workshop and take a leap into the core principles of a new system of artistic entrepreneurship for filmmakers. Discover principles of audience identification, engagement, and asset creation, learn about integrating audience engagement into the filmmaking process, and be empowered to embark on a re-configuration of film products – events, merchandise, digital and interactive/immersive, all geared toward maximizing your goals as a filmmaker.

Direct download: Think_Outside_the_Box_reduced.mp3
Category:TV & Film -- posted at: 11:00am UTC

Morgan Spurlock: The Greatest Masterclass Ever Sold


This masterclass offers the exciting opportunity to hear from the Academy Award-nominated documentary director, Morgan Spurlock, who made the international hit film Super Size Me (2004). Spurlock is here fresh off the release of his latest feature, The Greatest Movie Ever Sold (2011), about the practice of product placement in mainstream Hollywood cinema today. Listen to the voice of one of the most successful documentary filmmakers of the last decade as he talks about his successes, his failures, and what it takes to make it in the documentary world. 

Direct download: Morgan_Spurlock_The_Greatest_Masterclass_Ever_Sold_reduced.mp3
Category:TV & Film -- posted at: 11:00am UTC

New Sounds in Radio Documentary


A great radio documentary burrows into the mind of the listener, conjuring a new reality between their ears to focus, challenge, or even distort their perception of the wider world. Jeremy Hardy and a panel of key figures from the world of radio documentary take a journey through the vibrant landscape of audio storytelling.

Direct download: New_Sounds_In_Radio.mp3
Category:TV & Film -- posted at: 11:00am UTC

Sue Perkins - My Life in Television


Sue Perkins began her career writing for Radio 4 and French and Saunders, before presenting her own live daily show, Light Lunch on Channel 4 with double act partner, Mel Giedroyc. Since then, she has become one of the most well known and loved faces of British Factual TV, with her wry humour being key to the success of The Great British Bake Off. She has been part of many immersive TV shows including the Supersizers series with Giles Coren, where she ate (and drank) her way through 5000 years of British history whilst wearing an extremely tight corset.  Sue regularly presents the BBCs coverage of the Edinburgh festival and has fronted numerous documentaries, including The Art on Your Wall, The Books we Read, Mrs Dickens and The Real Von Trapps. She appeared in Maestro, conducting a concert orchestra, has driven the Dalton Highway and The Ho Chi Minh trail in The World's Most Dangerous Roads, and is a regular face on BBC programming. Sue has just finished filming a six month epic adventure up the Mekong river, which will be broadcast on BBC2 in the summer. Sue will take us through her career in documentary, comedy and factual TV, including the secrets of why Bake Off has been such a cultural phenomenon.

Direct download: Sue_Perkins_reduced_size.mp3
Category:TV & Film -- posted at: 11:34am UTC


Adrian Anthony Gill is a columnist currently employed by of The Sunday Times and Vanity Fair. Abbreviating his name to A.A. Gill, he has garnered a reputation as one of the nation’s most salient satirists, but often at the cost of dividing opinion. By writing on issues such as race, sexuality and geopolitics, feeling on his pieces is almost antonymous – loved and hated; harmonious and disagreeable; sought after and avoided. In this interview, Gill is in conversation with Nick Fraser – editor of the hugely successful Storyville – and discusses the documentary form with his trademark candor and frankness.

Direct download: AA_Gill_in_conversation_with_Nick_Frasier.m4a
Category:TV & Film -- posted at: 9:31am UTC

Tim Pool became an overnight online phenomenon the night Occupy Wall Street was first evicted from Zuccotti Park in New York City. His live stream marathon drew more than 20,000 simultaneous viewers and 250,000 unique visitors throughout the course of the day. Pool uses a smart phone with a taped sign reading "livestream" – and streams unfiltered, unedited footage. He invites the viewing public to join in by directly asking questions, which he responds to while reporting live. Tim discusses his experience as one of the most popular livestreamers in the world

Direct download: Occupy_Wall_Street_2012.mp3
Category:TV & Film -- posted at: 9:41am UTC

Brilliant Creatures: The Rebels of Oz with Germaine Greer

Brilliant Creatures: The Rebels of Oz with Germaine Greer

In the new BBC FOUR series produced in conjunction with Australia's ABC, 'Brilliant Creatures', Howard Jacobson charts the story of how, in the 1960's, four intellectual powerhouses 

Germaine Greer, Clive James, Barrie Humphries and Robert Hughes - emerged from down under and took the world by storm. After this screening of the first episode, Germaine Greer, in conversation with Howard Jacobson, recounts her own part in the tale, and her extraordinary career since.

Direct download: Brilliant_Creatures_new.mp3
Category:TV & Film -- posted at: 2:50pm UTC

Award-winning broadcaster Melvyn Bragg gives his take on the role of the arts on television, and shows us some clips of his favourite television moments of all time. 
Direct download: Melvyn_Bragg_2013.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:17am UTC

Join BAFTA to hear from the team behind the extraordinary Frozen Planet, BBC 1’s natural history epic. Taking viewers on a captivating journey to one of the most remote parts of the world and nominated for five British Academy Television Craft Awards in 2012, Frozen Planet used cutting edge technology to capture planet’s harshest terrain, bringing to life the ultimate portrait of Earth’s polar regions.

Filmmakers Dan Rees, (Producer/Director “The Last Frontier” and “On Thin Ice”, Cameraman Doug Allen and Elizabeth White (Assistant Producer/Director) will deliver this behind the scenes session on the making of Frozen Planet.

Direct download: BAFTA_Frozen_Planet_2012.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:11am UTC

How do you turn great stories into extraordinary films? And do you have to abuse your subjects to make your stories more powerful? This BBC Academy masterclass in ethics is a remarkable opportunity to challenge world-class documentary makers on their ethics. Roger Graef of Films of Record leads, and Brian Woods chairs as we unpick the making of Graef’s work, including Films of Record’s Bafta nominated Great Ormond Street series to discover how ethical dilemmas handled thoughtfully actually improved life at the hospital. Through this prism we examine dilemmas in work going back decades to explore how ethics are tested to deliver award-winning documentary. 
Direct download: Roger_Graef_Ethics_Masterclass_201_1.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:31am UTC

Selling your film on the international market is difficult enough without having to spend an additional £3-8k to reversion it because the music and archive isn’t cleared for world wide all media. Our panel brings leading international distributor Zodiak Rights and Getty Archive together to walk you through the process of acquiring a film and getting it ready for international sales.

Producers who are looking to exploit their films beyond the borders of UK broadcasters will benefit greatly from a session that shows how to shoot for the world wide market. 

Direct download: International_Dist_2013.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:04am UTC

Award winning film maker and director of the ground-breaking 'Up' series, Michael Apted talks about his career in both documentary making and feature films. 

Direct download: Michael_Apted.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:17pm UTC

How are audiences engaging with content on different distribution platforms? What makes them approach one over another? And where does that leave ‘traditional’ television? This session explores the realities of what brings audiences in, what keeps them hooked, and what has them turning to a different screen, as well as the difference that content genre makes. This expert panel of leading commissioners, audience analysts and producers will share their unique and wide-ranging insights into how their projects have been consumed and how this is shaping the direction of content production to come.

Direct download: Trendspotting_on_Platforms.mp3
Category:TV & Film -- posted at: 3:25pm UTC

The factual TV sector has many entrepreneurial producers but there are very few creative producers in the UK and further afield who produce feature length docs with worldwide ambitions. Lots of filmmakers produce their own work - is this through choice or because they can't find someone to collaborate with? Is it due to a skills gap or a lack of interest in becoming a producer? Is there a lack of knowledge about what producers actually do (apart from trying to raise money!) and how people might get training and mentorship to learn. 

Direct download: What_Do_Producers_Do.mp3
Category:TV & Film -- posted at: 5:05pm UTC

Sheffield legend Michael Palin joins Miranda Sawyer at this unique chance to hear the English comedian, actor, writer and television presenter discuss his documentary journeys to all corners of the earth. What makes Michael’s documentaries so distinctive? What inspires him? And what does he hope his audiences get out of the programmes? Hear about what happens behind the scenes and how he prepares for the often dangerous adventures and unexpected situations. The audience will be invited to ask questions and join the conversation.
Direct download: Michael_Palin_2013.mp3
Category:TV & Film -- posted at: 3:35pm UTC

Audio docs have become a breeding ground for amazing stories delivered in unique ways and has developed in to an area in which creators can explore and experiment. Through the output of Radio 4 and wealth of content from indies and NPR, documentaries are flourishing on radio, online and through podcasts and The Alternative World of Radio Docs aims to celebrate the best and most creative audio docs and question where the form will go in the future. 

Direct download: Radio_Docs_2013.mp3
Category:TV & Film -- posted at: 1:05pm UTC

Controller of BBC Two, Janice Hadlow in conversation with Sue Perkins on Janice's work in documentary over the years and the phenomenal changes she has brought to the BBC Two schedule. Overseeing some of the BBC’s biggest successes of recent years, and turning factual and documentary series into the stuff of water-cooler conversations and top trends on Twitter, Janice has overseen the rise of a new kind of factual programming, including Gareth Malone's Military Wives, Stargazing Live with Brian Cox, The Great British Bake Off and many more. Come and see clips and hear how these programmes came about.

Direct download: Janice_Hadlow_2013.mp3
Category:TV & Film -- posted at: 1:48pm UTC

John Peel's Record Collection

John Peel’s Record Collection is one of the most important and amazing in the World and has remained virtually untouched since the day he died.  On May 1st a project began to create an online museum of John’s collection. Each week John’s wife Sheila introduces the first 100 albums in each category from A-Z together with band interviews, John’s  handwritten notes,  album artwork  and home movies.  Hear how this came about from those who made it happen together with a local Sheffield band who John helped to launch.  Help them find ways to ensure that this unique project is completed.

Direct download: John_Peel_2012.mp3
Category:TV & Film -- posted at: 12:31pm UTC

Looking for a little good news? Key European commissioning editors will share their latest news, present their current documentary editorial line, indicating any update or changes that would have a direct effect on their commissions - content-wise or other. Providing information on what they are looking for for the next 12 months and beyond, through clip examples of recent successes or simply of films that best convey their editorial line, they will offer realistic but positive news to the market. 

Direct download: The_Commissioner_Panel_2013.mp3
Category:TV & Film -- posted at: 12:15pm UTC

In today’s complex distribution landscape, the possibilities for releasing documentaries can go far beyond a single broadcast window. Join a panel of leading distributors to explore how we can work together to make the most out of our movies, including DVD, online, mobile formats, theatrical, and grassroots distribution. How is the new multi-platform, globalized media-scape impacting our potential reach? In a networked age, what is the changing role of the filmmaker, and those on the distribution end? How do we negotiate rights with all these new formats? And just how well is my movie going to play on an iPhone?

Direct download: Beyond_Broadcast.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:43am UTC

Molly Dineen, one of Britain’s most acclaimed documentary filmmakers, is known for her intimate and probing portraits of British individuals and institutions – ranging from her debut film, Home from the Hill (1987), which made a star of its protagonist Colonel Hilary Hook to the BAFTA-winning Lie of the Land (2007), which explores the harsh realities of life as a British farmer. In this session, Molly will share over 20 years of experience in making documentaries; discussing, among other things, how her style and approach have developed and explaining why she’s not a ‘fly-on-the-wall’.

Direct download: Molly_Dineen_2011.mp3
Category:TV & Film -- posted at: 10:34am UTC