Master Class in Documentary Filmmaking | May 19

Master Class in Documentary Filmmaking with Jeffrey Brown

May 19, 2018 | 9am-6pm

Note: Walk-in registrations available. Please see below for important information.

SWAMP welcomes the award-winning documentary producer Jeffrey Brown (No No: A Dockumentary, Punk in Africa) to Houston for his highly acclaimed master class in documentary filmmaking.

Mr. Brown will lead a one-day master class on an affordable, down-to-earth approach to story, funding, production, festival strategy, and distribution to documentary filmmakers of all levels.Students will be invited to troubleshoot project-related issues and will be offered practical tips about the filmmaking process.

“I enjoyed attending Jeffrey Brown’s Master Class in Documentary Filmmaking and found it to offer a very practical approach to the different stages of the documentary process. The class allowed me to share my ideas, get feedback and advice and provided me with practical tools to help with my project. Jeffrey definitely knows about every aspect of documentaries and shares his own experiences from the different films he’s produced over the years. I highly recommend this class to anyone who is looking to jump into a documentary.”- D. Reyes, Producer, Cantina (Fort Worth, TX)

About Jeffrey Brown

Jeffrey has produced a number of award-winning narrative features and feature documentaries in Europe, Africa and the USA, playing international festivals such as Sundance, SXSW, Berlinale, Cannes, IFF Rotterdam, IDFA, New York FF, Tribeca and being released in cinemas internationally as well as on Netflix, HBO, Showtime, PBS, ESPN, AMC/Sundance Global, Sky Europe, and others. He taught documentary film at the Prague Film School and has presented his Master Class seminar to groups around the globe.

Brown is Co-Producer of No No: A Dockumentary on outspoken 1970s baseball player Dock Ellis, which premiered at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival, was released theatrically in 40 cities and is currently available on Netflix, Showtime, and ESPN. His narrative features include Mamas & Papas which won Best Film and Best Script at the 2010 Hamptons IFF, Shut Up and Shoot Me, a Czech-British co-production, which won Best Narrative Feature at the 2007 AFI Dallas IFF, and Academy Award-winning Czech director Jan Sverak’s Kooky, Special Jury Prize Winner at the 2010 Karlovy Vary IFF. His African films include Punk in Africa (New York FF, Rotterdam IFF) and Pirating Pirates (NY African FF) on Somali pirates, nominated for the prestigious Pavel Koutecky Award for global vision in documentary filmmaking.

Jeffrey has recently finished the feature documentary Vinyl Generation (Palm Springs IFF) on Czech alternative culture, Yallah! Underground (Visions du Reel) on underground culture in the Middle East, the feature doc Through the Repellent Fence (SXSW), recently broadcast on national PBS and Every Night’s A Saturday Night on Rolling Stones saxman Bobby Keys (Lone Star FF 2017) set for release in summer 2018. He is currently completing a documentary on the changing face of Austin music.

See at complete list of his work on imdb.


SWAMP Members** $99 | General Public $150

Walk-in registration will be available before class on a first come, first serve basis. Please arrive 15 minutes early to allow time for registration. Online registration is closed. 

Please review important information below. 

**Members: please register in person the morning of the event.  

Note: refunds are no longer available. 

Please email with any questions.


Saturday, May 19, 2018 | 9am-6pm

Art Institute of Houston
4140 Southwest Freeway
Houston, TX 77027

Free parking is available in the parking garage behind the building. Please do not park in spaces marked Patients Only. 

The class begins promptly at 9:00 a.m. Please arrive by 8:45 a.m. to enjoy some coffee and get settled before class. 
IMPORTANT: When you first arrive in the morning, you must check in with the front desk. Please wait in the lobby for a SWAMP volunteer to direct you to the room.
-Bring your ideas, questions and something for taking notes.
Lunch will NOT be provided. There are restaurants nearby on Richmond and at Greenway Plaza. We will have a list of area places the day of the event.
We will provide coffee and light refreshments. Please feel free to bring water and/or other beverages. Food and drink are allowed in the classroom.


8:45am  INTRODUCTIONS – Get acquainted over coffee and tea

9:00am  OVERVIEW – Attitude, managing expectations & a comprehensive approach

9:15am  STORY & STORYTELLING – Creating a strong, feasible story

11:30am  FUNDING / BUDGET – Discuss individual concerns within your project & sources of finance: public grants to crowdfunding to private


2:00pm  PRODUCTION Crews, cast, documentation, the shooting process

2:45pm  POST PRODUCTION Editing process, music, archives, work-in-progress screenings, and feedback

4:00pm  FESTIVAL STRATEGY / MARKETING Festival premieres, marketing your projects, yourself, and outreach

4:30pm  DISTRIBUTION Sales Agents, traditional vs. non-traditional models, deliverables, contracts/legal, DIY distribution

5:15pm  Q & A / ROUNDTABLE