Robert Guenette Gets IDA Pioneer AwardEastman Kodak Company
...Robert Guenette Gets IDA Pioneer Award
LOS ANGELES, November 9 -- Robert Guenette
will receive the International Documentary Association
(IDA) Pioneer Award for Distinguished Lifetime Service to the Documentary Community.The presentation will be made on December 7 during the 17th Annual IDA Distinguished Documentary Achievement Award ceremonies at the Directors Guild of America Theatre
has earned our admiration for his
many achievements as a documentarian and a humanitarian.He
is a founding member of our board of directors and a former IDA president.His
creativity, dedication and spirit of volunteerism helped to shape IDA as an effective support group and global forum for the documentary community.He
is an amazing example for all of us on how to be imaginative in our efforts to help those around us."Guenette
has compiled an impressive list of credits, including hundreds of hours of documentaries as an editor, writer, director, producer and executive of production companies.His
films have aired on the ABC, CBS
and NBC networks, PBS, HBO, Showtime and in syndication.He
has earned three Emmys and a Directors Guild of America award
career spans 50 years.It began in 1952 when he
was just 16 years old.The teenager left his
home in Holyoke, Massachusetts, and traveled to New York City by bus.He supported himself by working as a shipping clerk, and moved up to gofer and assistant editor.Guenette became a film editor for the CBS Television series Conquest and Omnibus.Later, he was director and associate producer for the NBC Television White Paper and The DuPont Show of the Month series. In 1962, Guenette was the director and associate producer of Our War in Vietnam, which provided prescient insights into the Unites States involvement in the escalating war.Guenette subsequently joined Metromedia, where he wrote, produced and directed William Faulkner's Mississippi.Guenette was a writer, producer and director on many Wolper productions, including the precedent docudrama They Shot President Lincoln!, Peary's Race for the North Pole, and The Plot to Murder Hitler.
In 1975, with his
late wife Frances and Paul Asselin, Guenette
founded what later became Robert Guenette Productions.IDA
was organized by current and former Wolper Productions employees in 1982.Guenette was a founding member.After serving as the IDA's president, he organized and taught the first IDA documentary class under the auspices of the University of California, Los Angeles' extension program.Guenette
later formed an IDA/CAUCUS master class at UCLA
, which produced the The Hollywood Gray List, spotlighting age discrimination in the television industry. Guenette
also earned kudos for directing two documentaries and a movie of the week based on Dr. Lois Lee's work with Children
of the Night, an organization that assists runaway teenagers who are victimized by adult criminals.
In 1994, he
and Robert Leeburg confounded the non-profit Los Angeles Media and Education Center (LAMEC), which uses media and art in attempts to bring people from all sectors of the city together.Guenette's
recent projects include writing, directing and producing 20 hours of documentaries about the history of the 20th century in collaboration with Wolper Productions and Warner Bros.
It ran as two separate series, Celebrate the Century on CNN
, and Legends, Icons and Superstars of the 20th Century on Discovery Channel.
In 2001, LAMEC assisted documentarians who agreed to actively involve local people in their productions.Recent LAMEC projects include documentaries about poverty and welfare and gun violence.The organizations has gotten students from Los Angeles area high schools involved, working alongside mentors with to make of a video about the political process.Guenette
organized a group of professionals who volunteer their time to mentor yearlong community activities, including helping independent filmmakers complete their documentaries, provided they involve people active in the making of the film.
An electronic photo of Robert Guenette
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