A Video Biography, or Video Memoir, is a movie capturing the life story of an individual, from their early years up to the present day. Memories of people, places, and experiences are documented on video or film, often combining interviews with family photographs and other memorabilia. The final product is generally preserved in digital format so it can be easily shared.
A few years back, only professional movie studios, world renowned film makers and documentarians like Ken Burns could really do justice to any kind of video biography production. Not only was the production process far bigger in scope than what any one person could undertake single-handedly, the subject matter had to have wide-spread public appeal.After all, who would be interested in going to a theater or watching a television mini-series about the neighbor down the street?
Today, however, there is a new breed of Video Biography producers, one that specializes in working solely with individuals and families to capture and preserve life stories of loved ones – real stories of real people – for their children, grandchildren and generations beyond.
These Video Biographies are created for whatever occasion or purpose a family member has in mind:
- Nancy, now in her sixties, wanted to do something unique and meaningful for her mother who is extremely frail but still very clear in her thinking. Her idea was to capture her memories in a documentary that could include stories her mother told her about her childhood nearly a century ago, and then carry the family story forward to the present time. She wanted to do this now, while there is still time for her mother to see her life story celebrated and how it will be preserved.
- Bill would like his children and grandchildren to know about the many life experiences that helped shape who he is and, ultimately, who the family is today. He also wanted to share memories of his parents and grandparents so others could know them as he had. His idea was to do it in a way that would capture the imagination of even the youngest generation.
- Robert’s wife Ellie has Alzheimer’s. His memories remain vivid even as hers have disappeared. For his own sake, and also for the sake of their grown children and grandchildren, Robert wants a personal documentary, a video biography, that will tell the life story of the women he has loved for decades, in all her vitality and engagement with life.
There is no one right way to capture and preserve the experiences and events of a lifetime. That is the unique appeal of a Video Biography.