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Doc U: Cable's New Big Thing - Non-Fiction Series and the Doc Filmmaker

International Documentary Association

Monday, June 23, 2014 from 7:00 PM to 8:30 PM (PDT)

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General Admission
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Event Details

International Documentary Association


Doc U

Doc U: Cable's New Big Thing
Non-Fiction Series and the Doc Filmmaker


New Date!
Monday, June 23, 2014 
 Discussion & Audience Q&A: 7:00pm - 8:30pm
Reception to Follow

The Cinefamily
611 N. Fairfax Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90036

IDA Members:   General Admission:
$15.00 / $5.00 (Student)   $20.00
Click for Discount   Purchase Above

Join IDA now! For discounted admission prices and more!


Expanding the documentary pie has always been the dream for both documentary filmmakers and enthusiasts alike. With the recent explosion of non-fiction series, that dream may be coming true. Just about every week, the press announces the launch of a new docu-series—many affiliated with prominent documentary filmmakers, such as Morgan Spurlock, Alex Gibney, and Joe Berlinger. CNN (Death Row Stories, Chicagoland, Crimes of the Century, Inside Man), Al Jazeera America (The System), OWN (Lindsay), Showtime (Seven Deadly Sins), and Pivot (TerraCycle, Welcome to Fairfax), as well as others, are all in the game, defining the genre as they go. What opportunities do these series represent for documentary filmmakers? How are audiences responding? Do these programs signal the latest evolution in the documentary form?

Join Anne Thompson of Indiewire's blog "Thompson on Hollywood" for a fascinating peek inside the world of non-fiction series and a discussion of their new place in the documentary landscape. Panelists include: Cynthia Kane, Senior Producer, Documentaries, Al Jazeera America; Lizzie Kerner, Director, Development & Acquisitions, CNN; Mary Lisio, EVP, Non-fiction and Branded Entertainment, Scott Free Productions; Jennie Morris, SVP, Acquisitions and Operations, Pivot.


Anne Thompson (moderator) writes the blog "Thompson on Hollywood" for Indiewire. Born and raised in Manhattan, Anne grew up going to the Thalia and The New Yorker and wound up in Cinema Studies at NYU. She worked at United Artists and Film Comment before heading west as that magazine's west coast editor. She wrote for the LA Weekly, Sight and Sound, Empire, The New York Times and on staff at Entertainment Weekly before serving as West Coast Editor of Premiere. She wrote for The Washington Post, The London Observer, Wired, More, and Vanity Fair, and did staff stints at The Hollywood Reporter, where she founded their first blog, "Riskybiz," and Variety. She eventually took her blog "Thompson on Hollywood" to Indiewire. She taught film criticism at USC Critical Studies, and continues to host the fall semester of "Sneak Previews" for UCLA Extension. In March 2014 HarperCollins published her first book, The $11 Billion Year: From Sundance to the Oscars, an Inside Look at the Changing Hollywood System.



Cynthia Kane serves as Senior Executive Producer in terms of commissions, co-productions and acquisitions for the premiere documentary strand on Sunday evenings, Al Jazeera America Presents at Al Jazeera America Channel, a division of the Al Jazeera Media Networks. Prior she worked at ITVS (Independent Television Service) managing the International Initiative for funding, also supporting the domestic funding initiatives. She worked in programming at Sundance Channel and co-created DOCday during her 10-year tenure there.




Lizzie Kerner is the Director of Development and Original Series, CNN, based in Los Angeles. In this position, she is responsible for cultivating relationships within the creative community and developing original programming across a variety of CNN platforms. She also oversees production on CNN’s original series, including, Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown, Inside Man with Morgan Spurlock, The Sixties, Chicagoland, Death Row Stories, and on three new series premiering this summer--Somebody’s Gotta Do It with Mike Rowe, The Hunt with John Walsh, and the Untitled Lisa Ling Project. Prior to joining CNN in August 2012, Kerner was Manager of Original Programming & Development at Sundance Channel. In that role, she developed high-profile non-fiction programs that include, Push Girls, All on the Line with Joe Zee and Love/Lust, and served as Executive Producer on the series The Mortified Sessions. At Sundance, Kerner also developed scripted projects that include Top of the Lake and Rectify. Earlier, she held positions at the Independent Film Channel and Viacom Productions.


Mary Lisio is an Emmy® Award Winning Producer and the Executive Vice President of Non- Fiction and Branded Entertainment at Scott Free Productions, where she oversees all non- scripted projects. Lisio’s first project with Scott Free was The Real Robin Hood, a 2-hr special for History Channel that aired alongside the release of Ridley Scott’s Robin Hood. In 2011, Scott Free premiered the Emmy®-winning documentary special Gettysburg for History Channel, which garnered seven nominations and won four 2011 Primetime Emmys®, including Outstanding Non-Fiction Special. The department’s first series Prophets of Science Fiction premiered in November 2011 on Science. Scott Free recently produced the ratings hits Killing Kennedy, starring Rob Lowe and Emmy®-nominated Killing Lincoln for the National Geographic Channel. Lisio also produced the recent series Crimes of the Century on CNN, and The Sartorialist for AOL ON featuring fashion photographer and blogger Scott Schuman. Lisio and Scott Free are currently producing an untitled verité documentary series that follows people in the last days of their lives and adapting Bill O’Reilly’s bestselling book Killing Jesus for National Geographic Channel. They recently announced the four-hour documentary miniseries Promiseland with CMT, about our nation’s unsung hero--the American Farmer. Prior to Scott Free, Lisio worked at Actual Reality Pictures, a non-fiction production company headed by RJ Cutler overseeing the development of multiple reality series for network, cable and online as well as the feature documentary, The September Issue.


Jennie Morris is Senior Vice President, Acquisitions and Operations for Pivot, Participant Media’s new television network aimed at the Millennial generation. In this role, she is responsible for all acquired content and scheduling for the network. Morris is a seasoned television executive with 15 years of experience in domestic and international programming and marketing. Most recently, she held the position of Vice President of Affiliate Marketing for AMC/Sundance Channel Global, supervising trade, consumer and affiliate marketing activities. Prior to AMC, Morris was Senior Director of Program Planning and Scheduling for Sundance Channel. Earlier in her career, she spent six years at Showtime Networks with working in Programming, International and New Media departments.




The evening's on-stage conversation will be followed by an audience Q&A, and a reception on the Cinefamily's backyard Spanish patio!

The use of cameras, audio recording devices, and video recording devices is prohibited at Doc U events.

For more information on IDA's Doc U: documentary.org/doc-u


Doc U: Cable's New Big Thing 
Non-Fiction Series and the Doc Filmmaker


Monday, June 23, 2014
Discussion & Audience Q&A: 7:00pm - 8:30pm
Wine Reception to Follow


The Cinefamily
611 N. Fairfax Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90036



Meters on Fairfax: 2hr parking until 8pm, free thereafter. Limited parking is available in the lot across Fairfax for $3.00. Non-permitted parking available in neighborhoods behind The Cinefamily.


Doc U is the International Documentary Association's series of educational seminars and workshops for aspiring and experienced documentary filmmakers. Taught by artists and industry experts, participants receive vital training and insight on various topics including: fundraising, distribution, licensing, marketing, and business tactics.

Special support provided by:

Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences
Department of Cultural Affairs - City of Los AngelesFirstCom Music
Los Angeles County Arts CommissionProSight Specialty Insurance


Members and Supporters of IDA
Have questions about Doc U: Cable's New Big Thing - Non-Fiction Series and the Doc Filmmaker? Contact International Documentary Association

When & Where

The Cinefamily
611 N. Fairfax Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90036

Monday, June 23, 2014 from 7:00 PM to 8:30 PM (PDT)

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International Documentary Association

Founded in 1982, the International Documentary Association (IDA) is a non-profit 501(c)(3) that promotes nonfiction filmmakers, and is dedicated to increasing public awareness for the documentary genre. Our major program areas are: Advocacy, Filmmaker Services, Education, and Public Programs and Events.

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Doc U: Cable's New Big Thing - Non-Fiction Series and the Doc Filmmaker
Los Angeles, CA Events Screening Film & Media
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