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Errol Morris’s “First Person”

Errol Morris’s landmark documentary series First Person first aired in 2000. The whole series is on YouTube, and it’s well worth watching.

I wondered how Morris achieved the distinctive directness of his interviews: every subject seems always to be talking straight down the barrel of the lens. It turns out that this is possible with a device of Morris’s own invention, which he dubbed “the Interrotron”. It’s a little like an autocue, and uses mirrors to allow the interview subject to look straight at the camera but also see and make contact with the interviewer. Production designer Steve Hardie – who worked with Morris on several films including Fog of Warexplains more.