A web documentary, interactive documentary, or multimedia documentary is a documentary production that differs from the more traditional forms—video, audio, photographic—by applying a full complement of multimedia tools.
Today we looked at interactive documentary. We took a documentary made by a filmmaker we admire and made it a multimedia production with the help of Storygami. I chose the documentary Kurt & Courtney (1998) by Nick Broomfield and made the first five minutes of it interactive. I really enjoy Nick’s style of narrative but can find his bias is often quite obvious so I felt adding in interactive extras might help to tell both sides of a story.
Where Nick discusses the rise in suicides following Kurt’s death i show the actual statistics for that year. Which reveal that there was actually a drop in suicides over the twelve months following Kurt’s death. I counter tales of Kurt’s tempestuous love life with happy photos of him enjoying timeat home with his wife and child, away from the limelight. I have added a little background information in on the punk music that influenced Kurt’s musical style and included a link to, what is believed to be, the missing recording Nick is not allowed to play during the documentary, due to a court order restriction, and some other examples of Nirvana’s early work. In the side menu is a short gallery of pictures including Kurt’s suicide note, discussed later in the film, and a reconstruction of how Kurt’s body was found. I have also included some photos of the last place where Kurt was seen during his ‘awol’ period, the bridge he used to do drugs under in his early career and now immortalized by the song Under the Bridge by The Red Hot Chilli Peppers
I had several problems using Storygami. I arranged the links to appear for just 4 seconds and during editing everything would work as planned yet when i tried to publish the finished video and upload it to WordPress the links would not play correctly and stayed on the screen indefinitely once they had popped up. After working with Danai to try and solve the issue we finally resorted to emailing Storygami to see if they could help. Their staff emailed me back within minutes and had soon resolved the problem. Considering Storygami is a free platform i was really impressed with their customer service and i can’t wait to see what new developments the company are working on as i feel interactive storytelling is definitely the future of documentary and i hope, very much, to be involved with that.
please click the link below to view my interactive documentary: