So You Wanna be a Cinema Journalist? The MasterClass. Here’s how and why?

It has nothing to do with reviewing films. It’s a derivative of the videojournalist — the one wo/man band who shoots news, docs etc.

Several videojournalists in the late 90s and 2000s became mobile journalist, drone journalists etc. The point was they were disruptors who worked with an assortment of gear.

The cinema journalist is the videojournalist or mobile journalist who uses cinema’s rich language to make news films, docs, promos etc.

Here’s the thing. Cinema and news making aren’t actually mutually exclusive to one another. The father of Cinema Verite or Direct Cinema, Robert Drew whose career influenced Cinema Journalist said this about news people back in the 1960s.

Cinema Verite or whatever you want to call it requires a degree of time and artistry that news people don’t have time for.

You can hear that clip in this video here at 00.57

Same with Videojournalists using cinema’s rich spectrum of langue to make their films, promos more immersive. I shot this promo about my work as cinema journalist and edited it in less than a day whilst training Chicago Tribune staff.

An example of the difference between normative news makers and cinema journalist can be found in the relationship between a photographer and photojournalist. One shoots a scene, and very well too that is fixed in convention, or otherwise the noun. The photojournalist shoots by working around a scene and tries to avoid TV’s cliches. They’re looking for movement — the doing, the verbs.

TV learned a language of B-rolls or GVs. Shots that tend to be non descriptive. No wonder people turn off the news. With cinema journalists, like their fictional peers, they shoot specific shots to articulate their interpretation. Each shot matters in building up the film. Cutaways become cut tos.

Not everything that’s shot requires post, or music. I know the arguments all too well as a former foreign correspondent. But Cinema journalists take their inspiration as immersive film making. Voice, choice of words, delivery, film structure all play a significant part.

The ‘Why it matters’ will be the dominance of new streaming platforms next year, who will be able to do things differently from their TV roots. Imagine, I told an audience in Denmark this year if Netflix did news, but not as you know it.

You get to make films that cut past the conventions TV news and politicians hope you’ll imbibe.

I’ve done Masterclass workshops around the world e.g. Russia, China, India, Egypt, UK and US and am considering using more or my Medium posts with my platform to show what’s likely to be the big thing in 2022.

Who’s doing exemplary work? As a leading practitioner and academic I’ll share their ideas, and give you a tour of the teaching methods I’ve used with students throughout the years. More from the video below.

Making a make-shift steady cam




Top Writer & Creative Technologist, Int. Award Winner. Cinemajournalist. Cardiff Uni @jomec. PhD (Dublin). Visiting Prof UBC, Ex BBC/C4News. Apple profiled.

Love podcasts or audiobooks? Learn on the go with our new app.

Recommended from Medium

Movie Madness: Another Famous Portland Oddity

Five Acting Comebacks That Didn’t Last

The Tenderness of La Tenerezza (Gianni Amelio, 2017)

Tiffin Box | Mihika’s Newsletter #9

Why Fruitvale Station — and not Black Panther — remains Ryan Coogler’s most important film?

Annihilation: Breathtaking, Scary, but Ultimately Empty.

Oscar Night. Language of New Storytelling

The worst movies I’ve ever watched… And recommend!

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store
Dr. David Dunkley Gyimah

Dr. David Dunkley Gyimah

Top Writer & Creative Technologist, Int. Award Winner. Cinemajournalist. Cardiff Uni @jomec. PhD (Dublin). Visiting Prof UBC, Ex BBC/C4News. Apple profiled.

More from Medium

Truth is a casualty of war, as is racism visited upon victims. Bothered?

BirminghamLive campaign provides 14,000 Christmas gifts to youngsters in need

Digitization Finds #05 — Stereolab’s “Emperor Tomato Ketchup”

What Chumbawamba Taught Me About Philanthropy