Informercial Documentaries? — Friday W4

The story ‘My Place in History,’ Devised by Me is about an upcoming documentary about the movie Star Wars — “Star Wars: The Legacy Revealed.” The documentary is produced in association with Lucasfilm, the creator of the movie. We can’t help questioning the creditability of the opinions in the documentary. When the subject of the documentary is also the investor, can it be directed, edited and produced without biases?

As the report pointed out, the practice happens a lot in documentary productions because of financial pressure and copyright issues. For the documentary about films and other performances, it’s almost inevitable to include a large amount of original, copyrighted materials into the documentary. However, the copyright owners (Lucusfilm in this case) are usually reluctant to license their work unless they are also involved in the documentary production.

I personally don’t feel anything wrong with the financial relations between programmers and the subjects. Autobiography, in which the writer and the subject are almost always the same person, is one of the most popular book genre. The autobiography is devised it place in history by itself, and we don’t have any problem with that at all.