George C. Stoney has been called the father of public access television, but perhaps a more fitting label would be the dean of American documentary filmmakers. After studying journalism at New York University and the University of North Carolina, he worked as a photo intelligence officer during World War II. In 1946 Stoney joined the Southern Educational Service as a writer and director, and later formed his own company specializing in socially relevant films. In 1952 he made All My Babies, a sensitive film on the training of black midwives in Georgia, which placed him at the forefront of American documentary film—where he has remained for over 60 years. His fame, however, rests not only on his skill as a filmmaker but also in his role as a mentor and teacher to generations of filmmakers worldwide. An early advocate of using video as a tool for social change, in 1972 he helped to launch a national movement to promote the use of cable TV channels by the public. A professor of film at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts, Stoney is also much in demand as a guest lecturer, promoter, workshop leader, and policy advisor around the world. Stoney will be present to lead a discussion after each program.
Organized by William Sloan, independent curator, and Sally Berger, Assistant Curator, Department of Film.