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Types of documentaries
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Types of documentaries


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  • 1. Types of Documentaries
  • 2. 1) DocusoapsBeginning in the 1990’s, docusoaps are a hugely popular hybrid genre. They are often long running documentary series, usually following certain people/ preparations to events. There is usually a central protagonist that the show follows and by watching them on a journey the audience begin to like/dislike them. Examples Big fat gypsy wedding, Driving school, Airport
  • 3. 2) Reality TVFactual television, sometimes known as infotainment. This emerged between1989-1999. People can use factual TV to show useful information andentertain the audience. Can sometimes contain a mixture of authenticmaterial with commercial content Examples Castaway, The bachelor, shipwrecked
  • 4. 3) Fly on the wallCamera is ignored/unseen by participants and they recordreal life events that unfold. Examples The family, Big brother
  • 5. 4) ‘Mixed’ documentaryThis combines interviews, observation, actuality footage, archive materialand narration to help move the narrative and story on. All the differentaspects are linked together smoothly through the use of a voice over. Examples ‘One Direction – ‘A year in the making’
  • 6. 5) Self-reflexiveIn this type of documentary, the participants know they are being followedand often speak directly to the camera Examples Britains hidden homeless
  • 7. 6) Docu-dramaRe-enactments and re-constructions. They show events that happened at thetime in a dramatic way Examples Bowling for columbine, who bombed Birmingham?
  • 8. 7) Fully narratedThis is when a voiceover is used to either convey an argumentor, in some cases, to explain whatever image is on the screenat the time to further explain it to the reader Examples Human planet
  • 9. Current affairs‘Current affairs’ refers to thing that are affecting society right now. They areusually journalist lead programmes and they aim to address news/ politicalagendas in more depth than the news bulletins. They are often organised andpresented as a journalistic report and usually argue a case. The reporterfrequently appears in front of the camera.They are half way between a documentary and news.Current affairs must work quickly to get there stories together. Whilst adocumentary could take months to create and put together, a current affairsprogramme must deal with issues that are happening now so have very littletime to get stories together Examples Dispatchers, news night, ‘tonight’ with sir Trevor McDonald