Saturday, September 27, 2008


Archival Storytelling has been shipped from the warehouse! Order it now through Focal Press, Amazon, and other booksellers!

If you like it, please be sure to post a review at Amazon -- reviews get picked up worldwide and make a big difference!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Ethics of archival storytelling

Check out the current issue of Documentary (IDA's e-newsletter), with an excerpt from Archival Storytelling featuring a roundtable discussion on the ethics of using archival materials, with Claire Aguilar, Jon Else, Stanley Nelson, Bill Nichols, and Rick Prelinger.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Who Uses Archival Materials? (Excerpt, Ch. 1)

...When people think of archival use, they probably think first about historical filmmakers such as Ken Burns and Lynn Novick, whose World War II series, The War, premiered on American public television in 2007. But a surprisingly diverse group of people uses archival materials, including not only documentary filmmakers but also advertising agencies, public relations firms, news organizations, fiction filmmakers, makers of educational material, students, and the general public. Any time you order a photograph from the collection of ship images at Ellis Island, or search through military records at, or visit a local museum or historical society, you’re benefiting from the preservation and accessibility of archival materials.

Among the most influential users of archival materials are advertising agencies, whose (relatively) high budgets have shaped today’s market and, to some extent, driven prices up. These agencies tend to rely on commercial stock houses; while fees may be higher than elsewhere, turnaround times are often shorter. In contrast, independent filmmakers may have less money but more time to do the digging that’s often required to find material in alternative, less expensive places.

Nearly all filmmakers, at some point in their careers, will want to use third-party materials or will be asked to license their own work to someone else. And despite perceptions, this use does not need to destroy your budget or schedule. With some creative thinking and perseverance, even filmmakers with limited funding should be able to find useful and affordable materials.

Want to read more? Click here for a link to a sample chapter!

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Gus Van Sant - trailer for Milk

The dramatic feature Milk, directed by Gus Van Sant and starring Sean Pean (on which Kenn served as archival film researcher) will be released in September. Watch the trailer!

Fans of documentary might also want to check out the 1983 feature, The Times of Harvey Milk, by Rob Epstein and Richard Schmeichen.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Thanks to IAMHIST!

Thank you to the International Association forMedia and History for posting us on their website!