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Thriving Archives works with footage companies to develop and execute marketing and business development strategies. We also produce market research reports on the global footage licensing industry and partner with companies providing services to the stock footage industry. 




EDN Online Pitching Session for Historical Documentaries is Set for December 15

David Seevers

With a focus on historical documentaries, this online session from the European Documentary Network (EDN) should be of interest to members of the footage community. As per the EDN website, "The EDN Online Pitching Session is an online video conference, where a selected number of documentary projects are pitched and matched with decision makers fitting the specific profile of the projects. This pitching session is focusing on documentaries about history and historical events."

The panel members for this session are:

  • Peter Gottschalk, ARTE GEIE, France
  • Peter Hamilton, Documentary Consultant, USA
  • Gaspard Lamuniére, RTS, Switzerland
  • Tore Tomter, NRK, Norway 
  • Krishan Arora, SBS, Australia
  • Katja Wildermuth, MDR, Germany

It looks like the session is open to EDN members only. Click here for more information.  


Janis: Little Girl Blue, An Archival Documentary Celebrating the Life of Powerhouse Musician Janis Joplin

David Seevers

Documentary filmmaker Amy Berg celebrates the life of the pioneering blues/rock legend Janis Joplin in her new film Janis: Little Girl Blue. The film got its start in 2008 when Berg heard that the Joplin Estate was “considering sharing their archive with a filmmaker.” After many pitches, Berg signed on to do the film, her first music documentary. The film draws on archival footage of Joplin’s performances and interviews as well as Joplin’s letters, which are read by the singer Chan Marshall (aka Cat Power).

Berg spoke briefly about her film with Steve Pond for the Wrap at the Toronto International Film Festival, and did an in-depth interview with filmmaker Ondi Timoner at BYOD (Bring Your Own Doc). 

The film hit some initial obstacles when Berg realized how big the rights challenges were. As she told Timoner, “I had not done a music doc before and I did not know what would go into all the archive and licensing costs, and after the first kind of roadblock the estate came back to me to try to relaunch this project, and it was daunting.” Berg brought on veteran filmmaker Alex Gibney as producer at that point and, after two more years of wrangling and negotiations, was able to get the project moving forward again.

The film was a labor of love for Berg. “I’m such a huge fan of hers and she represents to me something that is kind of misrepresented in the legacy of the 27 Club, which is a woman who was a powerhouse,” said Berg. “Often we remember the men for their musical talent and who they were to the world of music, but I feel like women get kind of a raw deal. We always remember these women as junkies who died alone. I wanted to kind of give some life to Janis the powerhouse musician that she was.”

Janis: Little Girl Blue will have its broadcast premiere on American Masters on PBS in February, 2016.

New Site Up and Running

David Seevers

We’ve just completed a major redesign of the search and screening platform. The new streamlined user interface, which came online in mid-August, makes it easy and intuitive for users to proceed from a footage search to a footage purchase.

Early results have been very encouraging: 

  • Record views on the site are up by 176%. Record views occur when a user opens a record to view more information about a specific clip or piece of footage.
  • Clip views are up by 168%. Clip views occur when a user plays a clip.
  • Buying actions (including shopping cart clicks, info requests and clip bin requests) are up by 357%.
  • Clip shares (a new feature) went from zero in July to 98 in August. Clips shares occur when a user sends a link to a specific clip via email.

How it Works
Once a user has identified a target clip, clicking on the associated shopping cart icon launches the designated sales page on a partner’s site within an overlay window on, through which the user can login to the partner’s site and complete the transaction. The user can then return to by clicking on the greyed area around the overlay to continue searching.

If a footage partner does not currently have e-commerce capabilities, clicking on the shopping cart activates an info request window, allowing the user to communicate directly with the footage partner and determine how to purchase and obtain the footage.

Other New Features

The new site includes a host of new features and functions, all designed to improve user experience, expedite footage searches and drive revenues for’s partners, including:

Solr Search Engine
In addition to delivering fast search results,’s newly integrated Solr search engine can filter results by keywords, categories, dates and content partners, so users can plow through a huge volume of search results and find the shot they need. An open source enterprise search platform from the Apache Lucene project, Solr powers the search and navigation features of many of the world's largest internet sites including Netflix, eBay, eHarmony, and AOL.

Clip Overlay Screening
Clicking on a thumbnail now launches a clip overlay, allowing users to screen clips and navigate rapidly from clip to clip. Clicking in the greyed sections at either side brings the user back to the results page, ready for more searching.

Manage & Share Clips
To streamline the clip approval process, has made it easier for users to save and share multiple clip bins. Users can also share individual clips by clicking the share clip icon, either from the record or clip overlay.

My Searches
To help manage the footage research process, the “My Searches” feature allows users to review previous searches, downloads, shares and ZAP emails. 

Live Chat
Because users often need help finding footage, has added a live chat feature, active from 9-5pm Eastern Time with a planned expansion in the near future.

Concierge Search
Coming soon, Concierge Search is a service where staff will do searches on the site and build custom clipbins for customers. 

We will be holding online demonstrations of the new site throughout the rest of the year, so please let us know if you would like to see what the new site can do.