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Reuben Aaronson is the founder of NGOFilms.  He is a highly respected filmmaker whose distinctive work reflects a wide variety of experience that now totals over thirty-five years.  Reuben has traveled the world to shoot and direct award-winning films about the human experience for National Geographic, Discovery, HBO, PBS and for NGOFilms.  From Academy Awards to Emmys, Aaronson's work is consistently recognized for its beauty and sensitivity. 

(See Samples of Work)

AMAZON GOLD

Amazon Gold is the account of a clandestine journey bearing witness to the dramatic destruction of the rainforest in the pursuit of illegally mined gold.  

Narrated by Academy Award winners, Sissy Spacek and Herbie Hancock, the film has been honored at the NY International Film Festival and the Jackson Hole Wildlife Film Festival.  Winner, Best Environmental Film of the Year at the GFN International Environmental Film Festival in Paris.  Winner, Short Film Category at SXSW Films for the Forest.  (Producer, Director, Cinematographer)

THE LAST FROG

This "unnatural history" film for National Geographic Television explores the beautiful and mysterious world of frogs and the recent decline of frog populations around the globe. Winner, National Emmy for Cinematography.  (Cinematographer) 

THE GROUND TRUTH: After the Killing Ends

The Ground Truth depicts with ferocious honesty the terrible conflict in Iraq, a prelude to the even more challenging battles fought by soldiers when they return home to personal demons, an uncomprehending public and an indifferent government.  Kenneth Turan of the LA Times called it “thoughtful, sensitive, perhaps the most emotionally wrenching of all the Iraq documentaries.”  Sundance Film Festival 2006.  Oscar short list for Best Documentary. (Cinematographer)

WHEN THE WELL RUNS DRY

A short documentary film focusing on severe water issues caused by an extended drought in Kansas and the ramifications for ranchers, farmers and townspeople.  Recipient of Humanities Grant.  (Director, Cinematographer)

STRANGE DAYS ON PLANET EARTH (Series)

A four-part National Geographic Special about global environmental change hosted by actor Ed Norton.  Shot all over the world, the series transports viewers to the frontlines of the battle to save the planet.  For PBS. Winner Best Series, Wildscreen Film Festival.  (Cinematographer)

THE RISING (in production)

A feature documentary,  five years in the making,  that focuses on the environmental and health consequences following the BP oil disaster -- called the worst human caused environmental disaster in U.S. history.  The film follows the efforts of everyday citizens literally fighting for their lives as they stand up against the 10th largest corporation in the world. (Producer, Cinematographer)

LORDS OF THE GARDEN, The Tree-top People of New Guinea

Anthropologist Paul Taylor journeys into the rainforest of Irian Jaya to study the Korowai, a semi-nomadic, virtually untouched tribe still using stone tools.  Winner, Gold Medal for Cinematography, Houston International Film Festival; Best of Festival, CINE Film Festival. (Co-director, Cinematographer)

IN PURSUIT OF THE SHROUD

A one-hour television special that uses modern scientific tools to examine this ancient cloth that bears a mysterious image of a crucified man some believe to be Jesus.  Shot in Europe, Israel and the US for The Learning Channel. Winner, Silver Medal, New York Film Festival.  (Producer, Director, Cinematographer)

WALK WITH ME: THE TRIALS OF DAMON J. KEITH

A feature documentary that tells the story of ten extraordinary years, four groundbreaking cases, and one unconventional federal judge whose rulings forever changed the face of civil rights in the United States. His fight for “equal justice under the law” has lasted for more than sixty years and in that time his belief in the highest aspirations of American democracy has never faltered. Winner, Audience Award, Best Documentary, Tallgrass International Film Festival and Anchorage International Film Festival. Winner, Jury Award, Lone Star Film Festival. Nominated, Best Cinematography, Nice International Film Festival.(Cinematographer)

ONLY IF YOU CAN ACT

A one-hour profile of one of America's greatest actresses, Helen Hayes, the “First Lady of the American Theater”.   For PBS' Emmy-winning series, "American Masters".  (Producer, Director, Cinematographer)

THE THIN RED LINE

Oscar-winning director Terrence Malick's adaptation of James Jones' autobiographical 1962 novel, focusing on the conflict at Guadalcanal during the second World War.  Nominated for seven Academy Awards including Cinematography.  (Anthropological Unit Director/Cameraman)

HOTEL TERMINUS: THE LIFE AND TIMES OF KLAUS BARBIE

This feature-length theatrically distributed film by Marcel Ophuls focuses on Nazi war criminal Klaus Barbie.  Winner, International Critics Prize for Best Film at the Cannes Film Festival; Winner, Academy Award for Best Documentary Film. (Cinematographer)

INSIDE THE VATICAN

This National Geographic Special, shot “behind the scenes” style at the Vatican in Rome reveals the mystery and spirit of the world’s oldest institution through the people and history that animate it today.  Narrated by Martin Sheen.  For PBS.  (Cinematographer)

PROMISES TO KEEP

A feature-length documentary about homelessness in America.  Narrated by Martin Sheen.  Nominated for an Academy Award for Best Documentary Film.  (Cinematographer)

FINE FOOD, FINE PASTRIES, OPEN 6 TO 9

A film portrait of Sherrill’s, a 65-year-old family-run restaurant on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C.  Nominated for an Academy Award for Best Documentary Short. (Cinematographer)

THEIR EYES WERE WATCHING GOD

This film, inspired by the celebrated novel by Zora-Neal Hurston, recounts life in the first African-American township in America.  When it aired, the film,  starring Halle Barry, was the most watched made-for-television movie ever.  (Director/DP for Second Unit photography.)  Nominated for multiple Emmys. ABC-TV.

RX FOR SURVIVAL (Series)

This six-part television series, shot all over the world, looks at the most critical and emerging threats to global public health and chronicles the leaders who, against all odds, deal with them. Narrated by Brad Pitt. For PBS, NOVA.  Nominated for a National Emmy.  (Cinematographer)

WHAT’S GOING ON: Sierra Leone

Second in a series of eight, about global issues affecting children.  This show, shot in Sierra Leone, deals with the lives of kidnapped children forced to participate in the horrors of a ten-year-long civil war. With host Michael Douglas.  For Showtime. (Cinematographer)

KEEPERS OF THE WILD

A National Geographic Special that examines the complex relationship between captive wild animals and those who care for them.  Filmed in Belize, Canada, the Channel Islands, Kenya and the U.S.  Winner, National Emmy and Peabody Awards. (Cinematographer)

THE GAUCHOS                                                                                                         

A National Geographic/Explorer film about the life and culture of the gauchos of Argentina.  Nominated for a National Emmy for Cinematography. (Cinematographer)

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Reuben Aaronson, Founder NGOFilms         (send us a note:contact form)