Press Releases

  • LAURA POITRAS NAMED 2017 GUGGENHEIM HONOREE BY AMERICAN FILM INSTITUTE

    AFI DOCS Will Celebrate Academy Award®-Winning Documentarian on June 16FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, MAY 23, 2017, WASHINGTON, DC — The American Film Institute (AFI) has announced that AFI DOCS will pay tribute to Laura Poitras — the groundbreaking filmmaker best known for her Academy Award®-winning Edward Snowden portrait CITIZENFOUR (2014) — as the festival's 2017 Charles Guggenheim Symposium honoree.Each year, the AFI DOCS Charles Guggenheim Symposium honors a master of the nonfiction art form.  Taking place at the Newseum on June 16, the Symposium will include an in-depth conversation with Poitras along with clips from her acclaimed works.  Poitras' latest film RISK (2016), a six-year project following WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, was released by Neon on May 5 and will air on Showtime this summer.  Poitras' impressive documentary catalog also includes THE OATH (2010), MY COUNTRY, MY COUNTRY (2006) and FLAG WARS (2003). "Poitras has the extraordinary instinct and ability to put her camera in the heart of history as it unfolds, regardless of the risk," said Michael Lumpkin, Director, AFI DOCS.  "Using her keen eye, Poitras reveals worlds just beyond what we can see.  We are honored to celebrate her remarkable career and dedication to the documentary form." Poitras' first feature-length documentary, FLAG WARS, was nominated for an Emmy® and won a Peabody Award, cementing her stature as a top-notch documentarian from the outset.  Next, she was nominated for a Best Documentary Feature Academy Award® for MY COUNTRY, MY COUNTRY, the first installment in her post-9/11 trilogy.  In 2015, Poitras won the Academy Award® for CITIZENFOUR.  That same year, Poitras co-founded Field of Vision, an entity that commissions and creates original short-form nonfiction films about global events. Poitras joins a renowned list of Guggenheim Symposium honorees:  Charles Guggenheim (2003), Barbara Kopple (2004), Martin Scorsese (2006), Jonathan Demme (2007), Spike Lee (2008), Albert Maysles (2009), Frederick Wiseman (2010), Chris Hegedus and D A Pennebaker (2011), Joe Berlinger and Bruce Sinofsky (2012), Errol Morris (2013), Alex Gibney (2014), Stanley Nelson (2015) and Werner Herzog (2016).AFI DOCS is proud to have AT&T return as this year's Presenting Sponsor.  Passes and tickets to AFI DOCS, including the Charles Guggenheim Symposium, are now on sale at AFI.com/afidocs.About AFI DOCSAFI DOCS is the American Film Institute's annual documentary festival in Washington, DC.  Presenting the year's best documentaries, AFI DOCS is the only festival in the U.S.

  • THE AMERICAN FILM INSTITUTE ANNOUNCES AFI DOCS 2017 FORUM

    Forum Features Spotlight on Virtual Reality, Canadian Docs, Impact of Conservative Docs, Nonfiction Podcasts and More  FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, MAY 22, 2017, WASHINGTON, DC — The American Film Institute (AFI) has announced the 2017 AFI DOCS Forum.  Open to all AFI DOCS passholders and festival filmmakers, the four-day Forum will take place June 15–18 at the AFI DOCS Festival Hub at the District Architecture Center in Washington, DC.  The Forum will present a variety of networking and professional development events for filmmakers, industry professionals and those with a passion for nonfiction storytelling.  Highlights include an examination of the rising surge of conservative documentaries, virtual reality presentations, talks on funding, female-focused docs and much more."We are excited to present a thought-provoking program of panels and presentations to attendees of the AFI DOCS Forum," said Michael Lumpkin, Director of AFI DOCS.  "Filmmakers and documentary film-lovers will convene to discuss the state of the industry, the latest trends and address the issues facing nonfiction storytellers today.  The Forum offers the unique opportunity to connect filmmakers and industry insiders outside of the movie theater."The Forum will offer presentations examining topics such as nonfiction storytelling in a "post-truth" world; emerging trends in documentary funding; and the latest programs to support women-centered initiatives in documentary filmmaking.Additional Forum programming includes a panel with AFI DOCS Canadian filmmakers to discuss Canada's role in creating the documentary form; a panel with short-documentary filmmakers and funders to discuss and support the model; a session with NPR on nonfiction podcasts; and a documentary case study and screening of the St.

  • AFI DOCS 2017 REVEALS FULL SLATE OF FILMS

    103 Films From 28 Countries Including Three World Premieres and 11 Spotlight Screenings Will Screen June 14–18 in Washington, DC, and Silver Spring, MDFOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, MAY 12, 2017, WASHINGTON, DC — The American Film Institute (AFI) has announced the full slate of films for AFI DOCS 2017, a five-day documentary celebration in the nation's capital.  Each year, the festival is committed to providing artists with the opportunity to present powerfully told, artfully constructed stories — and to connect audiences and filmmakers with policy leaders.

  • AFI DOCS 2017 ANNOUNCES OPENING AND CLOSING NIGHT FILMS

    Bryan Fogel's ICARUS and John Dorsey's YEAR OF THE SCABto Bookend Five-Day Festival AT&T Returns as Presenting Sponsor  FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE — MAY 4, 2017, WASHINGTON, DC — AFI DOCS, the American Film Institute's annual documentary celebration in the nation's capital, has announced the Opening and Closing Night films for its 15th annual edition.

Videos

  • AFI DOCS Opening Night Gala of the North American Premiere of ZERO DAYS at the Newseum on June 22, 2016. Courtesy of AFI DOCS/Seth Pierson.AFI DOCS Opening Night Gala of the North American Premiere of ZERO DAYS at the Newseum on June 22, 2016. Courtesy of AFI DOCS/Seth Pierson.
  • AFI DOCS presented by AT&T. Opening Night Gala at the Newseum on June 22, 2016. Courtesy of AFI DOCS/Seth Pierson.AFI DOCS presented by AT&T. Opening Night Gala at the Newseum on June 22, 2016. Courtesy of AFI DOCS/Seth Pierson.
  • Newseum hosts the AFI DOCS Opening Night Gala on June 22, 2016. Courtesy of AFI DOCS/Seth Pierson.Newseum hosts the AFI DOCS Opening Night Gala on June 22, 2016. Courtesy of AFI DOCS/Seth Pierson.
  • L to R: Filmmaker Alex Gibney and ZERO DAYS film subjects Eric Chien and Liam O'Murchu at the Newseum on June 22, 2016. Courtesy of AFI DOCS/Daniel Schwartz.L to R: Filmmaker Alex Gibney and ZERO DAYS film subjects Eric Chien and Liam O'Murchu at the Newseum on June 22, 2016. Courtesy of AFI DOCS/Daniel Schwartz.
  • L to R: New York Times' David Sanger, filmmaker Alex Gibney, film subjects Eric Chien and Liam O'Murchu and executive producer Sarah Dowland at the Newseum on June 22, 2016. Courtesy of AFI DOCS/Daniel Schwartz. L to R: New York Times' David Sanger, filmmaker Alex Gibney, film subjects Eric Chien and Liam O'Murchu and executive producer Sarah Dowland at the Newseum on June 22, 2016. Courtesy of AFI DOCS/Daniel Schwartz.
  • L to R: AFI DOCS Director Michael Lumpkin, New York Times' David Sanger, filmmaker Alex Gibney, film subjects Eric Chien and Liam O'Murchu, executive producer Sarah Dowland and AFI President and CEO Bob Gazzale at the Newseum on June 22, 2016. Courtesy ofL to R: AFI DOCS Director Michael Lumpkin, New York Times' David Sanger, filmmaker Alex Gibney, film subjects Eric Chien and Liam O'Murchu, executive producer Sarah Dowland and AFI President and CEO Bob Gazzale at the Newseum on June 22, 2016. Courtesy of
  • L to R: AFI DOCS Director Michael Lumpkin, filmmaker Alex Gibney and AFI President and CEO Bob Gazzale at the Newseum on June 22, 2016. Courtesy of AFI DOCS/Daniel Schwartz.L to R: AFI DOCS Director Michael Lumpkin, filmmaker Alex Gibney and AFI President and CEO Bob Gazzale at the Newseum on June 22, 2016. Courtesy of AFI DOCS/Daniel Schwartz.
  • ZERO DAYS filmmaker Alex Gibney at the Newseum on June 22, 2016. Courtesy of AFI DOCS/Seth Pierson.ZERO DAYS filmmaker Alex Gibney at the Newseum on June 22, 2016. Courtesy of AFI DOCS/Seth Pierson.
  • L to R: ZERO DAYS executive producer Sarah Dowland and film subjects Liam O'Murchu and Eric Chien at the Newseum on June 22, 2016. Courtesy of AFI DOCS/Seth Pierson.L to R: ZERO DAYS executive producer Sarah Dowland and film subjects Liam O'Murchu and Eric Chien at the Newseum on June 22, 2016. Courtesy of AFI DOCS/Seth Pierson.
  • AFI President and CEO Bob Gazzale welcomes the Opening Night audience to AFI DOCS and the screening of ZERO DAYS. Courtesy of AFI DOCS/Daniel Schwartz.AFI President and CEO Bob Gazzale welcomes the Opening Night audience to AFI DOCS and the screening of ZERO DAYS. Courtesy of AFI DOCS/Daniel Schwartz.
  • A packed house at the Newseum for the Opening Night Screening and North American Premiere of ZERO DAYS on June 22, 2016. Courtesy of AFI DOCS/Seth Pierson.A packed house at the Newseum for the Opening Night Screening and North American Premiere of ZERO DAYS on June 22, 2016. Courtesy of AFI DOCS/Seth Pierson.
  • L to R: The Washington Post's Ann Hornaday, filmmaker Alex Gibney, film subject Liam O'Murchu, film subject Eric Chien and New York Times' David Sanger at the Opening Night panel discussion of ZERO DAYS on June 22, 2016. Courtesy of AFI DOCS/Daniel SchwarL to R: The Washington Post's Ann Hornaday, filmmaker Alex Gibney, film subject Liam O'Murchu, film subject Eric Chien and New York Times' David Sanger at the Opening Night panel discussion of ZERO DAYS on June 22, 2016. Courtesy of AFI DOCS/Daniel Schwar
  • The Washington Post's Ann Hornaday moderating the Opening Night panel discussion with ZERO DAYS filmmaker Alex Gibney, film subjects Liam O'Murchu and Eric Chien and New York Times' David Sanger on June 22, 2016 at the Newseum. Courtesy of AFI DOCS/DanielThe Washington Post's Ann Hornaday moderating the Opening Night panel discussion with ZERO DAYS filmmaker Alex Gibney, film subjects Liam O'Murchu and Eric Chien and New York Times' David Sanger on June 22, 2016 at the Newseum. Courtesy of AFI DOCS/Daniel
  • ZERO DAYS filmmaker Alex Gibney during the Opening Night panel discussion of ZERO DAYS with The Washington Post's Ann Hornaday. Courtesy of AFI DOCS/Daniel Schwartz.ZERO DAYS filmmaker Alex Gibney during the Opening Night panel discussion of ZERO DAYS with The Washington Post's Ann Hornaday. Courtesy of AFI DOCS/Daniel Schwartz.
  • The Washington Post's Ann Hornaday speaking with ZERO DAYS filmmaker Alex Gibney at the Opening Night Gala on June 22, 2106 at the Newseum. Courtesy of AFI DOCS/Daniel Schwartz.The Washington Post's Ann Hornaday speaking with ZERO DAYS filmmaker Alex Gibney at the Opening Night Gala on June 22, 2106 at the Newseum. Courtesy of AFI DOCS/Daniel Schwartz.
  • Opening Night panel discussion following the North American Premiere screening of ZERO DAYS on June 22, 2016 at the Newseum. Courtesy of AFI DOCS/Daniel Schwartz.Opening Night panel discussion following the North American Premiere screening of ZERO DAYS on June 22, 2016 at the Newseum. Courtesy of AFI DOCS/Daniel Schwartz.
  • Filmmaker Ben Lear at the AFI DOCS Opening Night Gala at the Newseum on June 22, 2016. Courtesy of AFI DOCS/Seth Pierson.Filmmaker Ben Lear at the AFI DOCS Opening Night Gala at the Newseum on June 22, 2016. Courtesy of AFI DOCS/Seth Pierson.
  • Guests of the AFI DOCS Opening Night reception at the Newseum on June 22, 2016. Photo courtesy of AFI DOCS/Seth Pierson.Guests of the AFI DOCS Opening Night reception at the Newseum on June 22, 2016. Photo courtesy of AFI DOCS/Seth Pierson.