Advice from Robert Drew

Yesterday, documentary film lost one of its pioneers, Robert Drew. He was best known for his films Primary (1960), Jane (1962) and Man Who Dances: Edward Villella (1968), though he continued to produce work until his death at 90 years old. His early use of sync sound 16mm cameras broke new ground in the documentary form. He also fostered the early careers of Pennebaker, Leacock and Maysles and would influence the documentary landscape for years to come.

Last year, he was kind enough to share some words of advice with us for Tell Me Something. In honor of his passing, we are posting it here. Rest In Peace.


“If you want to make a cinema vérité film, make sure the timing is right. That is, you want to imagine the story that will happen, be there when it happens, capture it on film or tape without directing or distorting the reality, and edit to convey the feeling of being there.” – Robert Drew

Photo: Patrick Toole. (Sharon, Connecticut. June, 2013)

One Comment On “Advice from Robert Drew”

  1. Beautiful photo of Mr. Drew at his place of work. Thank you for posting this. So much information in that quote.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>