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Living films; a catalog of documentary films and their makers online

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"Records '37" for the Paris International Exposition. He and Brunins
then formed a crew for the production of documentaries making "Sources
Noires" in 1933, a saga of the oil industry and "Hobbies Across the Sea"
for the French government *-s pavilion at the New York Worlds Fair.

STUART LEGG, now producer and director for the National Film Board of
Canada, began his film career with Grierson's groui) in the Empire Mar-
keting Board, moving with hi~i to the General Post Office where he directed
"The New Operator", "Telephone Workers", "Cable Ship", "The Coming of the
Dial" and "B.B.C.: the Voice of Britain". He is also the co-author of
the standard work on film capital, "Money Behind the Screen". Before
leaving England for his present Canadian post Legg produced Strand Films'
famous Zoological series.

JEAN LENAUER, a native of Vienna, was introduced into the film world in
Paris by Rene Clair whom he interviewed for a newspaper in the French
capital. He has been correspondent and editor of a number of French film

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weeklies and was a regular contributor to Close Up and La Review du
Cinema. After holding a variety of positions in Paris film studios
he came to America in 193**. He opened the Filmarte Theater in ITew York
where several outstanding foreign f il^s have "been introduced to American
audiences. He hns completed a "book "based on his international film ex-
periences, "Here Lies Hollywood".

IRVING LEBMEH has worked on the staff of the Encyclopedia of Social
Sciences and the Commission of Human Relations of the Progressive Educa-
tion Association. In the film world he has done photography, editing,
recording, frae lance newsreels and still photography, acquiring a well*
rounded training in the production of all types of fpct films. His
latest photography has been on Robert Flaherty's film for the AAA, and
his latest editing has been on "The Children Must Learn", "Valley Town 11
and "Day After Day".

JAY LSYDA was born in Detroit and educated in Do,yton, Ohio. After an
introduction to photogrrphy through Ralph Steiner and the Film and Photo
League he produced with his own resources the documentary film "A Bronx
Morning" which vas widely shown abroad. As a result of its European
success Leydn. ras given the ODportunity to study at the State Institute
of Cinematography in Moscow. In the Moscow studios he worked for six
months under Dziga Vertov and spent rv yerrr and a h.'vlf as Eisenstein*s
assistant. Ho returned to the United States in 193& to become assistant
curator of the Museum of Modern Art Film Library. While there Mr. Leyda
prepared a history of the Soviet Cinema. He has served on the Exceptional
Photoplays Committee of the National Board of Review during which he
assisted in the formation of the Film Forum and the New York Film Society
and lias contributed to Theatre Arts Monthly, Movie Makers, Iskusstvo Kino
and New Theater. He has lectured at Hn.rvard, Columbia, Wesleyan and New
York Universities, Teachers College and the New School for Social Research
on film theory r>nd -practice. At present Mr. Leyda is editor of the
quarterly magazine, Films, and has recently completed the editing of the
1TYA film, "Youth Gets a Break". Mr. Leyd/r is chairman of the ADFP
Education Committee.

JOSEPH LOSEY came to documentrry films from a distinguished career in the
experimental theater. He wis graduated from Dnrtmouth College in 1929
and put in a yeir of gradurte - f ork on the Faculty of Arts and Sciences
.?.t Harvard University, followed bv positions r-.s drama critic for Theater
Magazine, reviewer for The Snturd.^y Review of Literature and the New York
Times, and foreign correspondent for Variety. He entered the theater as
assistant stage mrnr>,ger raid ertrn in "G-rnrid Hotel", and was 1-^ter st^-ge
manager for "Pavment Deferred" with Chnrles Lpughton, "Fatal Alibi", and
the opening performances of Radio City Music Hall in 1933. He has
directed the first performance of Paul Green's "Hymn to the Rising Sun",
the American performance of Dennis Johnstons' s "Bride for the Unicorn",
the experimental Boston production of Maxrrell Anderson's "Gods of the
Lightning" and two Federal Theater Living Newsppper productions, "Triple
A Ploughed Under "f}jid "Injunction Granted". He was both producer and
director for "Sunup to Sundown", Sinclair -?.nd Lloyd Lewis's "J^yhawker"
and Albert Boin's "Little 01' Boy".

His first film experience was as production supervisor for the
series of educational films edited by the Human Relations Commission of

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the Progressive Education Association. Last year ho produced "Pete
and His Cousins", a puppet film in color '.vh'.ch -?ar> h'WT! at the Petroleum
Exhibit at the He-^7 York W^-rlc.'s Fair. His rVat recent activity was as
producer of the EYA film "Youth Gets a Break". Mr. Losoy is chairman of
the Membership Committee of the ADPP.

MARY LOSSY 1 S career has been an extreme example of the mixture of education
and commerce that every documentary film producer must experience before
he gets anywhere. For her last two years at Telloslsy she vras already
earning a salary from the Neu York Times in an educational promotion pro-
gram to sell the paper to classes in eastern colleges and high schools.
1932 was the end of school and 193^+ ended her career at the Hev York Times
when she found insuperable obstacles standing betreen her and her ambition
to reach the editorial department. Edward L. Bar nays gave her her next job
promoting Philco Radio, from which she moved in 1935 to the March of Time-
to head school promotion vrork and formulate a program including a monthly
high school paper, Photo Reporter. For three years she also headed March
of Time's research department. Miss Lose y made an inspection tour of
England and the British documentary film movement, returning to the United
States in 1933 to initiate the Association of Documentary Film Producers.
Her more lucrative vrork in this period vras as assistant director of the
Association of School Film Libraries and in the American Film Center.
At present Miss Losey devotes her full time to the ADFP and to the scenario
of a film on "Women in Democracy".

ELIZABETH McCAUSLAJID is the- art and film editor of the Springfield, Mass.,
Republican. She is one of the few photography critics of this country, a
member of the Photo League's advisory committee, and a regular contributor
of definitive pieces to IT. S. Camera.

JOHN McMAlTCJS t^as a member of Lcuis de Rochmont's original staff rhen the
March of Time film unit v;as first founded. Coming to films from brief
business experience, he began work for de Rochmont as a collector of statis-
tics. Later he vras moved to the nerrs desk and became a cutter. He was
Julian Bryan's assistant in the making of documentary films on Russia and
Turkey and aided in the production of a propaganda film for the Turkish
government. In addition to his ^resent r/ork as film handler for the March
of Time McManus plans a documentary film on housing.

ARTHUR MAYER left the directorship of Paramount advertising to become a
theater operator (notably the Rialto Theater on Times Square, New York)
and a film distributor in the partnership of Mayer and Burstyn specializing
in foreign and in documentary films.

MARIAM MICHELLE was graduated from the University of Chicago in 193**.
Until she entered the documentary film field her career ranged from appren-
tice to a commercial photographer, free lance vork and publicity. A
collection of her pictures of Hew York City was published in book form for
children by Bobbs Merrill. Her first experience' in film vork was in the
capacity of still photographer for the Civil Liberties production by
Frontier Films. She has directed and Photographed three films, "Sunnyside
Progressive School", an experimental film or. modern dance ~nd a film
dealing with the Maverick Summer Theater.

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LEO MITTLSR acted, produced and directed for many years in State Theaters
of Dresden, Breslau, Frankfort, etc. In Berlin he directed for UFA and
Prometheus Films and in Paris he directed German productions. He made
"Honeymoon for Three" .and "Ch^er Up" in England and vrote the "Mayor's
Dilemma". He is at present in charge of theatrical releases -?t Renlfilm
Productions, Inc.

DOUGLAS MOOEE, "besides his work on formal musical composition ^nd his
duties on the staff of the music department of Columbia University, has
found time to compose tvo important documentary film scores, for "Power
and the Land" and "Youth Gets a Brerk".

EUGENE MOORE concerns himself, essentially, with the literary side of film
production. He was co-author of the screen play and shotting script for
"Our Town" and author of a screen piny and treatment of Romain Rolland's
"Pierre and Luce". He is the author of many rrdio scripts including work
for Columbia' s well-known educational program School of the Air. At present
he is connected with Realfilm Productions rnd is working on a film entitled
"Ships in Exile".

CHARLES MORRISON, film cutter for the March of Time, learned his trade via
the newsreel route. From 1920 to 1928 he held a variety of jobs rith the
International Newsreel whence he moved to Fox Movietone News, first as a
cutter ond L-tsr as custodian of the film library where newly-shot material
is filed for reference and use. Before coming to his present job he also
served as cutter for Pathe and Trans Lux. In addition to his present work
for March of Time Morrison is experimenting rith a device f?r projecting
three dimensional films.

NOBMAN MOSKOWITZ was graduated from the School of Architecture of the
University of Minnesota where he formulated his interest in film work and
worked on the staff of the Visual Education Service under Hobert Kissack
where he photographed "Youth of a Nation". In 19^0 he came to New York
and worked as cameraman on "Youth Gets a Break" and "It is for Us the
Living". He has joined a South American expedition headed by Paul Fejos.

CAROLINE NEI&SON, upon graduation from Smith College in 1933, rent to
work for Ralph Steiner with rhom she has worked ever since. On the produc-
tion of "The City" she assisted generally and gained a rounded training in
the production of documentary films. Miss Neilson is now assisting Mr.
Steiner on his Sunday po,ge on photography for the newspaper PM as well as
doing some short story writing on her own.

ADOLF NICHTE1THAUSER, Viennese by birth, combined, while in Austria, a
medical career with an interest in fostering and promoting better films.
While in Austria this interest took the form not only of practical film
study and production but also of Articles for film publications in Europe
as well as serving as Viennese correspondent for the New York Motion Pic-
ture Herald and the International Review of Educational Cinematography.
In 1939 Dr. Nichtenhauser came to this country where he brought together
his medical an: 1 , film talents in ^ork rith the National Tuberculosis Asso-
ciation making l6mm films on health problems, among which were "Fighting
for Victory" and "Eating Out". He is at present working on a manual for
the production of l6mm health films for local health organizations.

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FRANCES HALL OHMES has worked, in the Progressive Education Association
in preparing their special nchoolro^i versions , has assisted Helen Van
Dongen and Julien Bryan r,nd has worked on two productions for Joseph
Losey, "Pete Roleura and His Cousins "and "Youth G-ets a Break".

ARNOLD PEEL, a graduate of the law schools of Cornell, City College and
New York University, worked as literary critic and agent, free-lance
writer and magazine editor "before he became acting executive director
for Frontier Films in 1933. He has remained with Frontier Films in this

SPENCER POLLARD took a step many educators now find logical when the
Sloan Foundation "brought him from teaching economics p.t Harvard University
to teaching with the "broader instrument of films as director of the
Educational Film Institute at Hew York University where "Valley Town",
"The Children Must Learn 1 ' and "And So They Live" have "been produced.

HARRY RANDALL gained his first experience in f iln s while working for small'
commercial companies in Portland, Oregon. In 1939 ne Corked as electrician
and assistant production manager on the Civil Liberties picture of Frontier
Films. Since that time he has worked as portrait photographer and as
projectionist at the New York Worlds Fnir.

NICHOLAS READ'S first film experience was as assistnnt film librarian for
Paramount News in 193 g . He was granted a film fellowship in 1939 "by the
Rockefeller Foundation doing script work rt the University of Minnesota.
In July, 1930, he was employed "by the Canadian Motion Picture Bureau where
he edited "The Banff- Jr.sper Highway" and "Timber Front" and assisted
Irving Jacoby on location and in the cutting of "Hot Ice u ,.

IRVING- RSIS organized and directed the famous CBS Rrvdio Workshop "before
going to Hollywood to write and direct for Twentieth Century-Fox and
Paramount. His first film experience was director of sound for "The
Spanish Earth".

ROBERT RICHARDS is one of those traditional up from office boy careers
that you always herr r.bout at Time, Inc. After Hr,rvnrd ond a few months
at Randolph Field hoping to become an aviator he found himself clipping
out-of-town newspapers for Time writers. Before long he went into MOT
radio as a script writer and a little later becnme director of the radio
productions. In 1939 ^ e moved over to March of Time on the screen '-here
he was head script writer on "The Ramparts We Watch" and worked on a
number of other MOT productions including two commercial shorts made "by
March of Time for Chesterfield Cigarettes, "Tobacco Land" and "Pleasure

HARRY ROBIN began his musical trrlning at the age of eight, won seholar-
ships at the Neighborhood Music School at sixteen and five years later with
Marc Blitzstein. He began studying and working with Harms Sisler in 1933
and today is his general assistant. His film experience began in the music
department of Fleisher Studios and continued as music assistant under Mr.
Eisler for the scoring of "The ^00,000,000" and the animated puppet film
"Pete Roleum and his Cousins". At present he is working with Hnnns Eisler
on a project sponsored by the Rockefeller Foundation for experimenting in
sound and music for films.

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JULIAN ROjTFMM'S early filrn experience VTP.S rained as a film cutter. He
served in this capacity on Paramount pictorial, Universal' s "Stranger
Than Fiction" series, and edited ''Pirth of !: T ew China" and "Tsar to Lenin"
as well as a number of Russian and French films. He collaborated in the
production of "Imperial Valley", directed the humorous short "Datelines"
and turned producer for bhe making of the "Getting Your Money's Worth"
series which have appeared yearly since 1937- 2e was co-director with
John Ferno on the Educational Film Institute's film "And So They Live".
At present Mr. Hoffman is engaged in making three series, one for CCC
camps of which "Photography" is the first to "be completed, the second for
the Roosevelt Air School of which "Aviation Mechanics" is one, and the
third is a series on art techniques.

MORRIS ROIZMAN, film cutter for the March of Time, r*as "born in 1912 in Ber-
ditchev, a town near Kiev, whence his family fled to America during the
Russian Revolution. At the age of sixteen he left school to "become an
office boy at Fox Movietone since which time he has worked as a cutter
under Louis de Rochemont, moving to the March of Time when de Rochemont
organized that unit in 1935 Like many another documentary worker his
formal education has "been replaced "by film work which has acquainted him
with life all over the world. Besides his present work as cutter for
March of Time Roizman has edited Fox Movietone News, "The Magic Carpet"
of Movietone, "The Adventures of a Newsreel Cameraman" and de Rochemont 's
two early newsreel compilations, "Cry of the World" and "The First World

ALFRED SAXE has "been connected with the theater as actor, director and
teacher since 1930- He was engaged in these capacities with the Chicago
Repertory*- Theater, The Theater Guild, The Group Theater and the Federal
Theater Project. For the past year and a half he has "been connected with
the Frontier Films' Civil Liberties production as director. At present
he is ^riting a script for a film on education.

LEO SELTZER was born in Montreal, Canada, thirty years ago. In 1931 he
decided that his two major interests, art and technology, could best be
fused in photography and so he became a free lance news cameraman. *This
work occupied him for the next four yeses during which time he did extensive
work as cameraman, director and editor. In 1932 he took a trip through the
Middle West and South with the late Sidney Howard for the purpose of collec-
ting material for a film on the agricultural workers in these sections of
the country. Since then Mr. Seltzer has made numerous films of this type
including one done in 1933 on the longshoremen of the New York waterfront.
In 1935 he produced a series of medical films in natural color for the Mt.
Sinai Hospital and, since his employment by the WPA Federal Art Project
in New York City, has photographed and directed several films among which
are "Technique of Fresco Painting", a film showing the entire process of
planning and painting a mural in fresco, and "Merit System Advancing*, a
film made for the New York Civil Service Commission. Mr. Seltzer is on
the Board of the ADIT*

IRVIN SHAPIRO is the president of World Pictures Corporation, distributor
of foreign and documentary films, notably "The City" and "Song of Ceylon".

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JAMES SHUTE'S theatrical experience began i A the old. Provincetown Play-
house and ended in the Astoria studios on the Hecht-MacArthur film staff
from where he graduated to his present job - charter staff writer at the
March of Time.

RAYMOND SPOTTI SWOODE recieved his 3. A. from Oxford in 193^- The following
year he directed "Banking for Millions", a GPO Film Unit production, and
published the book, A Grammar of the Film (Faber and Faber) . In 1935-36
he was assistant editor with British National Films and for the next two
years was reader for MOM in London and Hollywood. From 1939 to the present
he has been connected with Audi o- Pictures, Toronto, Canada, as production
supervisor. With Stuart Legg he produced the film "Wings of Youth" on
the British Commonwealth Air Training Plan.

ROBERT STE3BINS' first film work, while still nursuing a musical career,
was as film editor and critic of New Theater. He was on the Nykino staff
that produced "The World Today" and was one of the organizing members of
Frontier Films, working on the productions of "People of the Cumberland",
"China Strikes Back" and "Return to Life". His latest work for Frontier
has been on the film for Chr:/sler and "White Flood".

RALPH STEINER, born in Cleveland, was graduated from Dartmouth College in
1921. Set up in the photographic business in New Yorkj Steiner soon became
a leading advertising photographer, working in both color and black and
white. He was staff -photographer first for the Delineator, later for the
Ladies Home Journal, spending his spare time Forking with a motion picture
camera. His first film, "H 2 0", won the first prize of $500 in the Photo-
play Magazine contest. He received a grant from a foundation to experiment
further rith motion pictures, mr-de several more short films n nd worked as
cameraman for Prthe on two commercial pictures and for Pare Lorentz on
"The Plow that Broke the Plains". Since then Steiner has given up still
photography to concentrate on making motion pictures, except for his
regular Sunday p.^ge in PM on photography. Following the formation of
American Documentary Films, Inc. Steiner ond Van Dyke collaborated on the
direction and photography of "The City". His most recent work has been on
the photography of "Youth Gets a Break".

FRED STEWART is a graduate of the Barter Theater and Group Theater. His
film experience began as the convnoser for "Men and Dust" and "The Children
Must Learn". He has just completed the direction of "Day After Day" for
Dial Films.

VICTOR STOLOFF hr.s recently arrived in this country from London where he
was preparing the English version of "Siwa, Fastness of the Desert", the
last of a series of films that he has produced in Egypt.

PAUL STRAND can justly be called the leader of American documentary photog*-
raphy, influencing as he has every serious young photographer in America.
In 1915 Mr. Strand had his first one man shov; of photographs r,t the famous
"291" Gallery in New York. From that time his work has been exhibited at
the Anderson Galleries, the Intimate Gallery, An American Place, Sala de
Arte, in Mexico City and the Museum of Modern Art. Two of his prints are
in the permanent collection of the Metropolitan Museum of Art. A publi-
cation of reproductions of his Mexican photographs is now in preparation.

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He has written numerous critical articles on photography, painting and

His film work be gnu in 1921 when he m-c)o a poetic documentary of
New York called "Manahatta" with Chrrles Shoelor. From 1922-32 he worked
for newsreel compp.nies - nd for MGM, Paramount and other organisations as
cameraman and was chrrter member of the IATSE. In 1933- 3^ ^- e supervised
the production of "The Wave", produced by the Mexican Government, for
which he -as co-author and photographer. The following year he was
cameraman with Leo Hurwitz and Ralph Steiner on Pare Lorentz' "Plow thft
Broke the Plains". In 1937 he *s one of the organizers of Frontier Films
and that year vac co-editor of the film "Heart of Spain". From 1939 to
the present he has been co-producer with Leo Eurwitz as well as cameraman
for the feature length documentary dramatizing the American heritage of
freedom, the Civil Liberties film. Mr. Strand is vice-president of the

WARREN STURG-IS 1 two yerrs ,at Harvard Medical School gave him a lasting
interest in medicine arid impressed aim with the importance of medical
movies for instructional purposes. In the last two years he has rn^de five
such films produced for hospitals and Departments of Public Health. He
was employed bv the March of Time and r-.t present is working on a TVA film
under the sponsorship of the Film Center of the Rockefeller Foundation.

HELEN VAX DONGEN received her formal education in Holland rnd while still
a student at the college at Bussum became interested in films. Her inter-
est gre*-' out of her membership in a group of young people that had banded
together in an effort to procure better novies. There was no film pro-
duction in Holland at this time and they were interested r/urely in getting
better films. This idea w-s realized in the founding of the Film-liga,
cradle of the documentary film movement in Holland. A year and a half
after its founding in 1927 a few active members of the League started
making their own films. Miss Van Dongen started her active film career
by editing and acting as general assistant to the first film group in
Holland. This was in 1930 vhen she worked as film and sound editor of
"Symphonic Industrielle" made by Joris Ivens in P->ris. Back in Holland
in 1932 Miss Van Dongen directed and edited two government films and in
the production of "The New Earth" she ras again Joris Ivens 1 editor.
During this same year she worked forUFA in Berlin and edited "Creosote"'*.
In 1936 Helen Van Dongen cane to America and for three years worked
for the Progressive Educrtion Association cutting and editing their
Human Relations series from Hollywood features. During these same three
years she both Joris Ivens and Joseph Losey in "Spanish Earth", "The
400,000,000" and "Pete Roleun and his Cousins". Most recently .Miss Van
Dongen has edited "The Making of America" for the Russell Sage Foundation,
and is now finishing work on "The Land" directed by Robert Flaherty for
the AAA. While in Washingtea she also edited "Power and the Land" made
by Joris Ivens for the REA.

WILLARD VA1T DYKE, one of the best-known of documentary x>roducer-directors,
wa.s born in Denver in 1906. He attended the University of California but
left .after three years determined to become a photographer. While per-
fecting his photographic technique he errned a living by working in a
cannery, in a bank, as .an x-ray technician .and as manager of a filling
station. The DeY-^ung Memorial Gallery in San Francisco, meanwhile, arranged
an exhibition of his photographs and soon after he was appointed photogra-

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Online Libraryinc Association of documentary film producersLiving films; a catalog of documentary films and their makers → online text (page 3 of 6)