This Has Been To Space

This Has Been To Space, a film codirected by Clayton Brown (MFA, Northwestern University), is currently featured as a summer screening engagement at Chicago’s Adler Planetarium. The short documentary follows a group of kids and astrophysicists as they launch a high-altitude balloon outfitted with cameras, GPS, and a Geiger counter. For ticket information visit,

Before You Know It

Before You Know It, a PBS/ITVS documentary edited by Kyle Henry, opened theatrically with engagements in LA, NYC, Portland, San Diego, Dallas, Detroit, and Chicago. The feature documentary tells the story of three gay seniors navigating the adventures, challenges and surprises of life and love in their golden years. Additionally, Henry has received a Chicago Digital Media Production Grant for his upcoming documentary The Half-Life of War. The project will couple footage from impersonal war memorials across the United States with audio clips of soldiers speaking about their personal and traumatic experiences of war. In July, Henry was the inaugural artist-in-residence at Austin’s Arts+Labor creative content community.

Maria Finitzo films are now available on Amazon

Congratulations to adjunct faculty member Maria Finitzo whose films Life Lessons and My Mother’s Idea are now available on Amazon. Finitzo’s feature documentary In The Game recently received a MacArthur Foundation grant and Finitzo continues production on Hard Earned, a six-part documentary series for Al Jazeera America.

Sneaky Time

Faculty member Ozge Samanci exhibited her interactive installation Sneaky Time at the Creative Showcases and Interactive Art Track of Advances in Computer Entertainment (ACE) in Twente, Netherlands from November 12th-15th. Sneaky Time was also exhibited at the International Conference on Interactive Digital Storytelling (ICIDS’13) in Istanbul, Turkey from November 6th-10th.

The Gatekeepers

On November 19, 2013, David Tolchinsky and Debra Tolchinsky interviewed Dror Moreh, director of the Academy Award nominated feature documentary, The Gatekeepers. The event was co-sponsored by The Department of Radio TV Film.

Shown right: Filmmaker Dror Moreh (left) with MFA Documentary Media Program Director Debra Tolchinsky (right).

David Tolchinsky awarded a 2014 Artist Fellowship in Literature

David Tolchinsky was recently awarded a 2014 Artist Fellowship in Literature (Poetry/Prose/Scriptworks) from the Illinois Arts Council and was featured in NewCity's “Film 50: Chicago’s Screen Gems 2013” coming in at #14.

In the “Top 25 Film Schools of 2013”

Northwestern University’s Department of Radio/Television/Film was spotlighted in The Hollywood Reporter as #13 in the “Top 25 Film Schools of 2013”.

The Believers

The Believers, a film codirected by Clayton Brown (MFA, Northwestern University), won Best Documentary at the 2013 Maryland International Film Festival. The film previously won the Gold Hugo for documentary at the 2012 Chicago International Film Festival and was nominated for best current-issue documentary at the Doc Miami International Film Festival in 2012. Brown’s Galileos Grave also won the award for best short film at the East Lansing Film Festival in 2012.

The Beautiful Dark

The Beautiful Dark, a play by Erik Gernand (MFA, Northwestern University), had a run this summer at Redtwist Theatre in Chicago as part of the theatre’s 2013 season. Gernand also participated in The Storefront Playwright Project (pictured), which took place during the month of July in downtown Chicago.

Where Soldiers Come From

The documentary Where Soldiers Come From, which Kyle Henry edited and Heather Courtney (GJ89) directed, won a News and Documentary Emmy Award for Outstanding Continuing Coverage of a News Story. It is available on iTunes and Netflix. The PBS/ITVS documentary that Henry edited last year, Before You Know It, was screened at NYC’s Lincoln Center’s FilmLinc theater as part of its Art of the Real series. In addition, Kyle's feature Fourplay toured theaters nationwide in Spring 2013 as is now available via Amazon and TLA Releasing.

Shown right: RTVF assistant professor Kyle Henry edits director and Northwestern grad Heather Courtney’s Where Soldiers Come From at the Sundance Institute’s Documentary Edit and Story Lab. Photo courtesy of Sundance Institute by Fred Hayes.