• Description
  • Bios
  • Trailer
  • Open to all AFI DOCS passholders.

    Documentary filmmakers have always been confronted with ethical dilemmas, both on or off camera, that require them to make crucial decisions that may later be open to second guessing, by themselves and others. Hosted by American University School of Communication Professor and Center for Media & Social Impact founder Patricia Aufderheide, this interactive, audience-participation session puts the focus squarely on documentary ethics. Confronted by a series of ethical scenarios, a panel of filmmakers and the audience will engage in a vigorous exercise of "second-guessing."

    Moderator: Patricia Aufderheide

    Ben Berman
    Yi Chen
    Giovanna Chesler
    Monica Long Ross
    Yael Luttwak

  • Patricia AufderheidePatricia Aufderheide (Moderator) is University Professor of Communication Studies in the School of Communication at American University in Washington, DC. She founded the School's Center for Media & Social Impact, where she continues as Senior Research Fellow. She is also affiliate faculty in the School of International Service and the History department at American University, and a member of the Film and Media Arts division in the School of Communication. Her books include "Reclaiming Fair Use: How to Put Balance Back in Copyright" (University of Chicago with Peter Jaszi); "Documentary: A Very Short Introduction” (Oxford);" "The Daily Planet" (University of Minnesota Press); and "Communications Policy in the Public Interest" (Guilford Press).


    Ben BermanBen Berman began as an editor for TIM & ERIC AWESOME SHOW, GREAT JOB! (Adult Swim) and has directed episodes of LADY DYNAMITE (Netflix), MAN SEEKING WOMAN (FX) and the pilots and series for JON BENJAMIN HAS A VAN (Comedy Central) and COMEDY BANG! BANG! (IFC). Berman wrote and directed the short film I'M A MITZVAH, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in 2014. His second short film, HOW TO LOSE WEIGHT IN 4 EASY STEPS, premiered at Sundance in 2016 and screened at Cannes. UNTITLED AMAZING JOHNATHAN DOCUMENTARY is Berman's first feature documentary.


    Giovanna CheslerGiovanna Chesler directs and produces films and transmedia work addressing the body, sexuality and gender. As a director, Chesler’s PERIOD: THE END OF MENSTRUATION (Cinema Guild) facilitated an international discussion on pharmaceuticals. They produced the ITVS/POV documentary OUT IN THE NIGHT and associate-produced/co-edited Zeinabu Irene Davis' SPIRITS OF REBELLION: BLACK CINEMA AT UCLA, which won the African Academy Award for Best Diaspora Documentary in 2016. Chesler is an Associate Professor and Program Director of Film and Video Studies at George Mason University. They are a 2019 Media Arts Fellow by the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities.


    Byron HurtByron Hurt is an award-winning documentary filmmaker, published writer, anti-sexist activist and lecturer. He is also the former host of the Emmy®-nominated television show REEL WORKS with BYRON HURT. For more than 20 years, Hurt has been using his craft, his voice and his writings to broaden and deepen how people think about gender violence, race, music, visual media and food justice. As an activist, Hurt has served as a gender violence prevention educator. The former Northeastern University football quarterback was also a founding member of the Mentors in Violence Prevention (MVP) program, the leading college-based rape and domestic violence prevention initiative for college and professional athletics. Hurt also served as an Associate Director of the first gender violence prevention program in the United States Marine Corps.


    Monica Long RossMonica Long Ross is a co-founder of 137 Films, a documentary production company dedicated to telling the stories that erupt where science and culture meet. She co-directed the award-winning documentaries THE ATOM SMASHERS and THE BELIEVERS. Her plays have been produced nationally and are published by Dramatic Publishing.


    Yael LuttwakYael Luttwak is a Washington, DC-based filmmaker. Luttwak’s first feature, A SLIM PEACE, explores the relationships between Arab, Muslim and Jewish women, and premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival in 2007. Her recent projects include co-directing GUEST HOUSE, which follows the stories of three women in a re-entry house as they attempt to acclimate to life after being released from incarceration and battling addiction. She also co-directed the award-winning documentary MAINE GIRLS, following 13 immigrant and U.S.-born teenage girls as they bridge cultural divides, which premiered at the 2017 Camden International Film Festival, and JOURNEY FROM EVIL: BOKO HARAM for Voice of America/Creative Associates broadcast in 2017.

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