I’m a huge fan of Errol Morris. He is such an innovative filmmaker who has technically reinvented the classic documentary interview set-up and masterfully used it to challenge interview subjects’ recollections of events (see The Thin Blue Line).
You can see his set up here:
So Morris was an obvious choice for IBM when it celebrated its centenary with a series of three doco films examining the company’s heritage. “They Were There” is told by first-hand witnesses—current and retired employees and clients—who were there when IBM helped to change the way world works. In this case doc film makes perfect sense. By telling the stories of the company’s technological breakthroughs from the employees perspective, what could be a dull recitation of technological facts about a faceless corporation instead creates an unexpected personal and emotional connection with the audience.
Morris has also applied his documentary sensibility to the advertising world where he has directed a
number of ads for clients such as Nike, Cisco, Apple and Volkswagen.