Welcome to a special film-showing of a documentary “Obit” by Vanessa Gould, a filmmaker, editor and camera operator working in Brooklyn.
It’s a shame no one wants to talk to them at parties because obituary writers are a surprisingly funny bunch. Ten hours before newspapers hit neighborhood doorsteps—and these days, ten minutes before the news hits the web—an obit writer is racing against the deadline, to sum up, a long and newsworthy life in under 1000 words. The details of these lives are then deposited into the cultural memory amid the daily beat of war, politics, and football scores.
Obit. is the first documentary to explore the world of these writers and their subjects, focusing on the legendary team at The New York Times, who approach their daily work with journalistic rigor and narrative flair. Going beyond the byline and into the minds of those chronicling life after death on the freshly inked front lines of history, the film invites some of the most essential questions we ask ourselves about life, memory, and the inevitable passage of time. What never dies?
The screening will be followed by Q&A and discussion with film-director Vanessa Gould via Skype live session.
The rights to screen these films are generously provided by American Film Showcase, a program to bring award-winning contemporary American documentaries, feature films and animated shorts to audiences around the world, offering a view of American society and culture as seen by independent filmmakers. Funded by a grant from the State Department’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs and administered by the University of Southern California School of Cinematic Arts, the Showcase highlights the value of film in fostering understanding and cooperation, dialogue and debate.