Independent Documentary Directing and Building an Ethical Documentary Practice (On Demand)

on demand course

Whether you are an emerging filmmaker or an established one, we’ve created and curated this collection of resources and tools as a brief beginner’s guide to making a documentary, from concept to practice, with an ethical framework in mind.

Building an ethical documentary practice requires that you get an understanding of the current documentary landscape and the historical context that got us here. As storytellers, we encounter stories through our own lived experience or sometimes seek them out. There is no hard and fast rule to authorship and storytelling, which is why this course will guide you into many conversations that filmmakers and the industry at large is having about filmmaking.

This course defines “Narrative Sovereignty” as a concept and provides different examples in the field surrounding this concept; guidance on decisions around how you put the film together, and potential factors such as government scrutiny or the handling of traumatic material; and sections on Directing, Editing, and Sound Design, which generally happen after a project has been conceived of and gotten some funding in order to move the project to production. It is designed as a self-guided experience where you can choose the sections and resources that will best support you on your creative journey.

Included in this course are two Sundance Collab Master Classes (a $54 value) to give you a deep dive into key elements of Documentary Producing.

All course videos are closed-captioned. For other accommodations and support services, please email us at