A number of professors are going on sabbatical next year, and among them is professor Mike Geraci. Geraci will be going on sabbatical in the fall to delve into interactive documentaries and find the interworking of how they are made and for what purpose.
Pacific University gives professors the option to take a sabbatical once every six years. The purpose of a sabbatical is to prevent burnout and provide professors with the ability to maintain a high level of up to date knowledge on the subjects they teach.
Geraci said that interactive documentaries are new on the web and have only been in existence for about two years. He said they interest him because there is no real way to make money on the films since they are simply online and do not require a subscription.
An interactive documentary can have budgets ranging from a few thousand dollars up to hundreds of thousands without any form of profit. The documentaries also differ between one another based on the number of people that create them.
Some interactive documentaries are put out by three to five people, while others have teams up to 50. Geraci said this is what interests him because he wants to find out why there is such a broad range of differences.
“The interactive documentary blends the internet with filmmaking,” Geraci said.
He said that the web is a new form of story telling and the interactive documentary combines filmmakers writers, web designers, graphic designers and sound technicians which creates an individualized documentary for singular viewing purposes.
During his sabbatical, Geraci said he will hand pick 20 interactive documentaries and dig into them and study how they are made.
“I’m going to try and get in touch with the people who made them and look behind the scenes and find out how many people what skill sets were involved,” Geraci said.
His end goal is to compile a data base and make a website that spells out exactly what goes into producing an interactive documentary and let people learn and find out about how to make an interactive documentary.