Volume 95, Issue 36

Tuesday, November 6, 2001
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Western pin-ups ready to hit UCC

Talking 'Weather porn'

Manhunt on for naked masturbator

No restrictions on foreign students

Gang murders up 63 percent

News briefs

Talking 'Weather porn'

By Kristina Lundblad
Gazette Staff

An Emmy award-winning documentary producer wowed Western students yesterday with stories of glaciers, mummies and annoying mosquitoes.

"When I'm looking through the camera, the world changes for me," said Larry Engel, a New York documentary producer and Columbia University film professor.

Engel spoke at Middlesex College yesterday about the experiences he had while producing, directing, writing and shooting most of his own work. He has been nominated for eight Emmys and has won one.

"I'm the luckiest person – I get to go all over the world. That's why I do documentary," he said.

Engel made his first hour-long film in 1985, "Tornado!," which had him and some graduate students criss-crossing Oklahoma chasing tornadoes.

Engel has also worked on another documentary featuring a weather phenomenon. For his film, "Hurricane!," a film crew flew into the eye of a storm. "Some say we started an industry trend called 'Weather Porn'," he said.

Engel also offered advice to those who wish to enter his field.

"With documentaries, you can't lose sight that it is in fact real – you're working in a domain of conveying reality," he explained.

The most recent documentary Engel worked on is "The Mummy Road Show" for National Geographic. Engel travelled all over the world with two anthropology professors from Connecticut studying mummies.

One of the researchers who worked with Engel on that project was Western anthropology associate professor Andrew Nelson, who commented on what he has seen thus far of the documentary.

"I'm happy with it," he said. "I love what I do and am very pleased to reach out to the public – [such documentaries] are very good for public outreach and an important part of academia."

Leanne Clare, a master's journalism student, said she enjoyed the presentation and added many of the things Engel spoke about are the same things that are motivating her to enter the film industry.

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Copyright The Gazette 2001