Learn how to conceive, research, write, shoot, edit and produce documentaries.

This one-week workshop is for independent filmmakers, PBS, cable and other network producers, historians and researchers, who want to improve their skill in developing and making professional documentaries for television. The class consists of screening and critiquing a diverse variety of documentary work for style, content, point-of-view, and production values. funding, producing, directing, editing, copyright, archives, rights, research methods, budgets, story structure, interviewing, music, distribution, and how to position a project for national broadcast or foreign sales, are all discussed in the class. Students have the opportunity to research local stories, shoot interviews, and edit a short segment for presentation and critique.  Students may also bring their previously produced work for review. 

By week's end, participants come away with an understanding of how professional documentaries are produced, broadcast and distributed.

".......I picked the workshop because it sounded right for me and what I wanted to accomplish, it was indeed right, and went far beyond my expectations. I cannot tell you how much I appreciated your skill, your depth of knowledge, your experience, your teaching style….and your wicked sense of humor............." Gillian Martlew


Lawrence Hott

Lawrence R. Hott has been producing documentary films since 1978, when he left the practice of law to join Florentine Films.  His awards include an Emmy, two Academy Award nominations, a George Foster Peabody Award, the duPont-Columbia Journalism Award, the Erik Barnouw Award, five American Film Festival Blue Ribbons, fourteen CINE Golden Eagles, screenings at Telluride, and first-place awards from the San Francisco, Chicago, National Educational, and New England Film Festivals.  

Hott was the Fulbright Fellow in Film and Television in the United Kingdom in 1994.  He received the Humanities Achievement Award from the Massachusetts Foundation for the Humanities in 1995; a Massachusetts Cultural Council/Boston Film and Video Foundation Fellowship in 2001; and the Rosalynn Carter Fellowship for Mental Health Journalism in 2001.  He has been on the board of non-fiction writers at Smith College and has served as a panelist for the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Massachusetts Cultural Commission, and the Massachusetts Foundation for the Humanities.   In 2009, 2010, and 2012 Hott presented his films in Ecuador, Colombia,Venezuela and Algeria as part of the American Documentary Showcase, a program of the US Department of State. He is a member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts Sciences, the Directors Guild of America and the Producers Guild of America.

His recent films for national PBS broadcast include Through Deaf Eyes, American Masters John James Audubon: Drawn From Nature, Niagara Falls, The Return of the Cuyahoga, Imagining Robert and The War of 1812.  He has just finished the one-hour film Frederick Law Olmsted: Designing America and is now producing Rising Voices/ Hótȟaŋiŋpi : The Revitalization of the Lakota Language for PBS broadcast.

For more information visit,  www.florentinefilms.org


Course Dates

Oct 1 to Oct 7



Class Size