Shooting In The Wild

Overview

Longtime producer Palmer provides an in-depth look at wild animals on film, covering the history of wildlife documentaries, safety issues, and the never-ending pressure to obtain the "money shot." Marlin Perkins, Jacques Cousteau, Steve Irwin, Timothy Treadwell, and many other familiar names are discussed along with their work, accidents, and in some cases, untimely deaths. Palmer is highly critical of Irwin, and offers fascinating revelations about game farms used by exploitative filmmakers and photographers ...
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Overview

Longtime producer Palmer provides an in-depth look at wild animals on film, covering the history of wildlife documentaries, safety issues, and the never-ending pressure to obtain the "money shot." Marlin Perkins, Jacques Cousteau, Steve Irwin, Timothy Treadwell, and many other familiar names are discussed along with their work, accidents, and in some cases, untimely deaths. Palmer is highly critical of Irwin, and offers fascinating revelations about game farms used by exploitative filmmakers and photographers looking for easy shots and willing to use caged animals to obtain them. He also considers the subliminal messages of many wildlife films, considering everything from Shark Week to Happy Feet and how they manipulate audiences toward preset conclusions about animal behavior. In all this is an engaging and exceedingly timely look at a form of entertainment the public has long taken for granted and which, as Palmer points out, really needs a fresh and careful reconsideration.
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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Exposure to the elements, long periods in close quarters, and danger are all involved in the making of wildlife films. Veteran filmmaker Palmer (director, Ctr. for Environmental Filmmaking, Sch. of Communication, American Univ.) takes readers behind the scenes and explores the history, processes, and current debates related to this complex field. Within the chapters covering the basics of filming animal life, Palmer intersperses stories from other producers and directors about, e.g., on-screen talent bringing questionable clothing to a remote shoot and Grizzly Man subject Timothy Treadwell's tragic death. Palmer makes clear the challenges of creating films that are entertaining enough for wide distribution yet capable of educating audiences on environmental conservation. VERDICT Less an exposé than a well-reasoned yet passionate argument for changing wildlife filmmaking practices and creating ethical guidelines, this is an accessible and engaging read. Recommended for fans of Animal Planet and conservationists.—Kimberly Bartosz, Univ. of Wisconsin-Parkside, Kenosha
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781458715586
  • Publisher: ReadHowYouWant, LLC
  • Publication date: 10/1/2010
  • Pages: 432
  • Product dimensions: 7.00 (w) x 10.00 (h) x 0.88 (d)

Table of Contents

Foreword Jane Goodall xiii

Preface xix

Introduction Movies That Can Change Your Life 1

1 State of The Art The Many Faces of Wildlife Filmmaking 11

2 How Did We Get Here? A Brief History of the Business 31

3 Behind The Camera How Wildlife Films Are Made 52

4 The Money Chase Finding Funds without Selling Out 78

5 Cult of Personality The Celebrity Connection and Presenter-Driven Shows 90

6 Audience Abuse Staging and Other Deceptions 102

7 Too Close For Comfort What Filmmakers Do for the "Money Shot" 124

8 Nature Porn and Fang TV The Temptations of Sex and Violence 145

9 Sins of Omission Leaving Conservation Behind 154

10 Doing It Right Profiles in Ethical Entertainment 167

11 The Way Foreward How Wildlife Films Can Make a Difference 180

Acknowledgements 199

Notes 202

Index 215

About The Author 223

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