“There’s a hunger for documentaries online,” says Searching For Sugar Man Producer | NFTS

From NFTS

ACADEMY AWARD-WINNING PRODUCER SIMON CHINN SPEAKS AT NFTS FILM CLINIC

“There’s a hunger for documentaries online,” says Searching For Sugar Man Producer

Simon Chinn, the double Academy Award winning producer of Searching For Sugar Man and Man on Wire has told up coming documentary-makers to look to the ‘small screen’ when making films in future.

Speaking in conversation with Dick Fontaine, NFTS Head of Documentaries at an NFTS Film Clinic event, hosted at Google UK HQ in London, Simon Chinn, said although documentary films could still be theatrically released, the landscape of distribution was changing. Chinn recently launched a new company, Lightbox, to create high quality non-fiction content for the international television and digital marketplaces.

He added: “There is a hunger for documentary content for the small screen, especially from American online companies such as Netflix, Amazon and Xbox. New opportunities are emerging online for a diversity of documentary makers and new audiences are opening up. The public wants more documentary content, partly driven by reality TV. But the bar has risen; documentary makers have to tell stories in an even more entertaining and emotionally engaging way than fiction.”

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Oscars 2013: what it’s like to win by Simon Chinn | The Guardian

Simon Chinn, left, and Searching for Sugar Man's director Malik Bendjelloul with their Oscars. Photograph: Xinhua/Landov/Barcroft Media
Simon Chinn, left, and Searching for Sugar Man’s director Malik Bendjelloul with their Oscars. Photograph: Xinhua/Landov/Barcroft Media

Simon Chinn, British producer of best documentary Searching for Sugar Man, describes his ‘surreal experience’

Phew. That’s better, now I’ve got a cup of tea in my hand. Famous? It’s only a documentary, for Christ’s sake. But yes … it was amazing.

It is such a surreal experience. We documentary makers don’t get to mix with real Hollywood, but it had got very good distribution in the States so a lot of people knew about it. I met a lot of properly famous people. I had Joan Collins fondling my Oscar. I wished Daniel Day-Lewis luck before he went on – a great win that, he is a class act.

I’d been there before, when I won for Man on Wire, so I knew the drill a little bit – but I’m not sure if that really helps much. For the first time this year, thanks to the changes introduced by Michael Moore, all the members of the academy got to vote on it, 6,000 people who all got DVDs instead of just the documentary sector of about 170. So it was a much more level playing field, and it felt like a good year to win.

Read more at Oscars 2013: what it’s like to win | Film | The Guardian.

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