I spoke briefly to Vincent Vittorio, the founder of Life Is My Movie Entertainment, which shines further light on the documentary genre through some truly compelling films. Vincent has a hand in writing, directing, and producing. I was fortunate enough to see two of the latest efforts; Incarcerating US and One Day in April.
Robin Write: Before we get to the nitty gritty, what have you seen in the last year or so, documentary or fiction that really stood out for you?
Vincent Vittorio: I just recently saw the documentary Imposter which came out in 2012, but was recommended to me by some other filmmakers and I fell in love with the recreations and the way the interviewees bled between the footage.
RW: Do you follow the awards season buzz? How much does this kind of attention interest you?
VV: I am a big fan of award season and being in Los Angeles it is always an exciting time getting ready for the Academy Awards. I was at a film seminar last night in Hollywood and it was so special to see all the planning that goes into setting up for the awards. There is something so magical about the celebration we have for the moving picture. I would like to think that one of my long term goals as a documentary filmmaker is to be able to have one of my films nominated for an academy award.
RW: Tell me about the movies you loved as a child growing up?
VV: The classics like Goonies. There is something imaginative about kids getting to go on a grand adventure and beating bad guys. Back To The Future, Karate Kid, Top Gun etc… I was lucky to grow up in a time when there wasn’t as much content available and movies were special.
RW: When and how did you start to take interest in documentary films?
VV: I studied journalism and was always interested in covering stories of all kinds. Only I quickly realized it was not the direction I wanted to take and ended up doing a double major. Journalism and film and media studies together provided me a greater appreciation for the history of cinema and the desire to tell stories. Upon producing several narrative films I explored my first feature length documentary and truly fell in love with the genre.
RW: So, please tell me Life Is My Movie Entertainment, and how it came about?
VV: In 2011 myself and business partners believed in the power of documentary filmmaking so we embarked on a journey to make that the core mission of our company. Since then our catalog and body of work has grown tremendously. We are excited about what the future holds.
RW: What had you done in the industry or through education prior to that taking off?
VV: I explored teaching, but while I enjoy being a consultant or mentor to filmmakers I felt like academia was limiting my involvement. I also spent spent a short time running a government television station but knew rather abruptly that was not where my story was meant to take place.
RW: What’s your take on the importance of objectivity in documentaries?
VV: It is a fine line that really forces the documentarian to be a good steward to the content. I compare the process to that of riding a wave, you go with the content and let it bring you where the story takes you. It is also important to realize that there are many different forms of documentary storytelling and while the voice of the artist is always a part of the creation process it varies based on the topic and type of film.
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