Saturday, January 15, 2011

The Power of a Great Idea:

The old saying, “Necessity is the mother of invention,” is truer than ever in today's independent documentary age. With everyone and their half-adopted brother jumping on the non-fiction bandwagon, it has become that much more challenging for nascent chroniclers to stand out from the DV camera crowd.

Enter One Square Mile, an online documentary series devised by the Fort Worth, Texas husband-and-wife team of Carl and Elisabeth Crum. Now shooting their eighth episode, the couple does exactly what the title of their travelogue suggests; they pick a 640-acre area of an American city and then travel there to connect the dots on a one-degree-of-separation scale.

Episode Two of Season Two (below) focuses on New Orleans and certainly gives hope for the future of the decimated Louisiana city. Among the locals featured in this 15-minute segment are a woman whose first day on the new job at the only reading radio station on the U.S. FM dial (WRBH) was the same day that Katrina made landfall and the owner, for more than three decades, of a local independent bookstore that was one of the first city businesses to re-open after the 2005 disaster.

The individual web pages for each episode of One Square Mile are extremely well put together, linking to a handsome listing of the featured subjects, statistics about the profiled area, an arial photo of the neighborhood in question and additional scenes and interviews.

Up ahead for the Crums is Austin, Texas and Barrow, Alaska, to go along with previous episodes that started in their hometown and moved on to New York City, Hanalei, Hawaii and more. If you want to suggest a square mile for this local Emmy Award winning series to tackle in the future, you can click here. In the meantime, kudos to the couple (pictured below) for a great new variation on an age-old journalism school standard.

No comments:

Post a Comment