Doc News: “Connected” Acquired; CIA-Produced Film Discovered; “Superheroes” on HBO

– Tiffany Shlain’s “Connected” (formerly subtitled “An Autoblogography About Love, Death & Technology”) has been acquired by Paladin four months following its Sundance debut, according to indieWIRE. The distributor will release the doc in the fall, beginning with a bow in San Francisco this September ahead of the usual NYC/LA opening. I saw the film in Park City, where I was impressed with its ability to balance a personal first-person story with an informative exploration of, well, everything. At the time I wrote a note about it being like a sequel to “We Live in Public.” Mix in the ambition, if not necessarily the levels of achievement, of “Sherman’s March” and “The Tree of Life,” and I’m maybe still with that note.

– A documentary produced by the CIA has been discovered and obtained under the Freedom of Information Act and will soon be distributed to the Internet. Titled “Extraordinary Fidelity,” the hour-long film presents the story of two agents captured in China while on a mission to recover an American spy in 1952 and held for twenty years. It features archival footage mixed with reenactments. I guarantee Hollywood is already looking into a dramatic version.


The Gucci Tribeca Documentary Fund has awarded nine projects a share of $150,000, one third of which will go strictly to films directed by women. Edward Norton, Amir Bar-Lev and Jessica Alba were among the jurors who selected the winners out of 450 submissions. For more information about the fund and the films it will benefit, see indieWIRE’s report.


– This month marks the 90th anniversary of the worst race riot in American history, which took place in Tulsa, Oklahoma in 1921. A new hour-long film titled “Burn: The Evolution of an American City,” which tells the story of this violent incident, will premiere on The Documentary Channel on June 28. The debut is part of DOC’s ongoing Black Documentary Cinema series.


– And speaking of television premieres, Tyler Measom and Jennifer Merten’s Mormon teen refugee doc “Sons of Perdition” hits Oprah’s Documentary Club, on her OWN channel, tonight.


– One more: Michael Barnett’s real-life superheroes (RLSH) profile “Superheroes,” which I saw and loved at Slamdance this year, will premiere on HBO August 8. So far I can attest it’s better than both “Thor” and “X-Men: First Class,” as far as this summer’s superhero movies go.


– The Consumerist shares a good reason, and screencap, for why you should always be managing/monitoring your toddler’s Netflix Instant queue yourself. One guy’s recommendations included a doc about porn (“Naked Ambition: An R-Rated Look at an X-Rated Industry”) mixed in with cartoon suggestions. Feel good movies, indeed.


About Christopher Campbell
I am a blogger for Documentary Channel and, where I write the Doc Talk column. I prefer real stories to fake ones. I tweet here: @thefilmcynic

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