Jeremy Cohan: What are documentaries?


October 29, 2023    
11:00 am - 12:00 pm


Event Type

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What are documentaries?

In the past decade with the advent of streaming, documentaries have become extremely popular (and lucrative). The challenge of arranging reality to work as a story is what has always drawn me to it over fiction. What has also always fascinated me about docs is the audience perception of what a documentary should be or what it should do. What are their responsibilities to the audience? What are their responsibilities to their subjects? What is the documentary medium’s relationship to journalism?

Jeremy Cohan is a documentary and commercial director residing between Los Angeles and New York. Growing up on Long Island, he first got into filmmaking through documenting his friends skateboarding. This escalated (after film school) to traveling the country to make videos and commercials with well known professional skateboarders. In the late aughts he switched his focus to documentaries and attended graduate school in New York City. In his first short documentary film he explored the topic of suicide bereavement and won a Directors Guild of America award and was nominated for a Student Academy Award. Afterwards, for almost a decade, Jeremy worked as an editor on documentaries, television shows and commercials before coming back to directing.