Sam Pollard (filmmaker)

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Samuel D. Pollard
Samuel D. Pollard, Peabody Awards (cropped)(rotated)(May 2011).jpg
Pollard at the 2011 Peabody Awards
Alma materBaruch College (BA)
OccupationFilmmaker
AwardsPeabody Award (2020)

Samuel D. Pollard is an American film director, editor, producer, and screenwriter. His films have garnered numerous awards such as Peabodys, Emmys, and an Academy Award nomination. In 2020, the International Documentary Association gave him a career achievement award. Spike Lee, whose films Pollard has edited and produced, described him as being "a master filmmaker." Henry Louis Gates Jr. characterizes his work in this way: “When I think about his documentaries, they add up to a corpus — a way of telling African-American history in its various dimensions.”[1]

Career[edit]

Born in Harlem, New York,[2] Samuel D. Pollard began his career in 1972 as an editor for Victor Kanefsky, after having taken courses in a workshop organized by WNET.[3] He obtained a BA from Baruch College in 1973. Early in his career, he assisted George Bowers, the editor of A League of Their Own, The Good Son and The Stepfather. St. Clair Bourne was also a mentor.[4]

Awards and recognition[edit]

In 1998, Pollard received an Academy Award nomination for 4 Little Girls with Spike Lee. In 2010, Pollard (with Geeta Gandbhir and Arielle Amsalem) received an Emmy Award (Outstanding Picture Editing for Nonfiction Programming) for the film By the People: The Election of Barack Obama. In 2020, the International Documentary Association gave Pollard its first Career Achievement Award.[5]

MLK/FBI was named best documentary at the 2020 San Diego International Film Festival.[6]

In 2021, Film at Lincoln Center put together Tribute to Sam Pollard, featuring several of his documentaries, calling him one of "cinema’s most dedicated chroniclers of the Black experience in America."[7][8]

Filmography[edit]

As director[edit]

As editor[edit]

  • 1973 – Ganja and Hess
  • 1978 – Just Crazy About Horses, documentary.
  • 1981 – Night of the Zombies.
  • 1981 – Body and Soul, directed by George Bowers.
  • 1983 – Style Wars
  • 1984 – Smithsonian World, television series.
  • 1984 – Style Wars, documentary.
  • 1985 – Private Resort, directed by George Bowers.
  • 1985 – Tornado!.
  • 1985 – Nova, television documentary series.
  • 1987 – Distant Harmony, documentary.
  • 1988 – Depression, documentary.
  • 1990 – Mo' Better Blues, directed by Spike Lee.
  • 1991 – Jungle Fever, directed by Spike Lee.
  • 1992 – Juice.
  • 1993 – Fires in the Mirror, directed by George C. Wolfe, play written by Anna Deavere Smith.
  • 1994 – Surviving the Game.
  • 1994 – No Dreams Deferred.
  • 1995 – Clockers, directed by Spike Lee.
  • 1996 – Girl 6, directed by Spike Lee.
  • 1997 – 4 Little Girls, documentary.
  • 2000 – Bamboozled, directed by Spike Lee
  • 2000 – The Very Black Show.
  • 2000 – Half Past Autumn: The Life and Works of Gordon Parks, documentary.
  • 2002 – Hookers at the Point, documentary.
  • 2004 – Chisholm '72: Unbought & Unbossed, documentary.
  • 2004 – Isn't This a Time! A Tribute Concert for Harold Leventhal, documentary.
  • 2005 – Twelve Disciples of Nelson Mandela, documentary.
  • 2006 – Katrina, documentary.
  • 2007 – Pete Seeger: The Power of Song, documentary.
  • 2009 – By the People: The Election of Barack Obama, documentary.
  • 2010 – Gerrymandering, documentary.
  • 2010 – Joe Papp in Five Acts, documentary.
  • 2010 – If God Is Willing and da Creek Don't Rise, documentary series.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Rapold, Nicolas (January 14, 2021). "The Filmmaker as Historian: Sam Pollard and 'MLK/FBI'". The New York Times. Retrieved January 20, 2021.
  2. ^ "Sam Pollard". Tiburon International Film Festival. Retrieved February 26, 2021.
  3. ^ Lewis, Tracie (March 30, 2009). "The Avid Excellence in Editing Award: Sam Pollard". IDA. International Documentary Association.
  4. ^ Tinubu, Aramide A. (February 20, 2017). "We Spoke to Director Sam Pollard About His PBS Documentary 'The Talk - Race in America' Which Premieres Tonight, Feb. 20". Shadow and Act. Retrieved January 20, 2021.
  5. ^ Hazelton, John (November 10, 2020). "Sam Pollard among IDA honourary award winners". Screen.
  6. ^ Huchinson, Chase (January 15, 2021). "An Interview with Director Sam Pollard on MLK/FBI, Collaboration, and America's Double Standard". The Stranger.
  7. ^ Schindel, Dan (January 12, 2021). "A Tribute to a Filmmaker Who's Chronicled Black Life, From Civil Rights to Post-Katrina New Orleans". Hyperallergic. Retrieved February 2, 2021.
  8. ^ "Tribute to Sam Pollard". Film at Lincoln Center Virtual Cinema. Retrieved February 2, 2021.

External links[edit]