Former CBS Sports Producer to Lead Documentary Film Workshop

Terry Ewert to mentor students and help them create award-winning films

UM students work on a project during a filmmaking workshop at the Oxford-University Depot. Terry Ewert, former executive producer of CBS Sports, is leading a 48-Hour Documentary Film Festival workshop this weekend on campus. Photo by Thomas Graning/Ole Miss Digital Imaging Services

OXFORD, Miss. – A 13-time national Emmy Award-winning sports television producer and television executive will return to the University of Mississippi School of Journalism and New Media this month to lead a 48-Hour Documentary Film Festival workshop.

Terry Ewert, former executive producer of CBS Sports, has won Emmys for writing and documentaryfilmmaking . He was also head of production for the coverage of three Olympic games at NBC Sports and the Atlanta Olympic Committee.

“The 48-Hour Documentary Film Festival workshop will begin with a three-hour classroom to go over the rules, techniques and expected outcomes from the student films,” he said. “We want the students to tell us a true story with their projects.

“Normally, the first hours will be pre-production (planning and writing); the second full day will be production; and the final hours will be post-production (editing).”

Ewert, who has been an adjunct instructor of sports television production and sports TV reporting several times for the school, said he pitched the workshop to deans.

The school’s faculty is pleased to welcome Ewert back, said Debora Wenger, assistant dean for innovation and external partnerships.

“Last year, he launched our first-ever 48-hour documentary competition, and this year, we’re looking forward to even better results,” Wenger said. “He and one of the school’s faculty, Mike Fagans, will be helping students turn out award-winning documentary work in a 48-hour, fast-paced contest. It’s going to be fun.”

Terry Ewert

Students interested in participating and possibly winning a $100 gift card should join Ewert and Fagans in the Overby Center, Room 206 (boardroom) at 3:30 p.m. Thursday (Oct. 10). Participants will receive all the rules at this pre-production meeting.

Organizers are looking for multiple teams of two to three people to produce mini-documentaries within 48 hours. The videos will premiere in Overby Auditorium at 6:30 p.m. Saturday (Oct. 12). Everybody is invited to view the student work.

First-place team members – up to three – receive $100 Visa gift cards each; second-place team members – up to three – receive $50 gift cards. Last year’s winner also took home a first-place award in the student documentary category from the Associated Press of Mississippi and Louisiana.

Ewert said he hopes past student filmmakers will understand a little more about the world of professional documentary filmmaking and how to tell a true story using the tools they were given while improving their video, audio, lighting, interviewing and editing skills.

“I think telling a true story visually is important in this day and age,” he said. “I feel that understanding how to reach a viewer, a reader, a consumer, a voter with an important fact, editorial, news story is at the heart of all journalism.

“Our world has become a world of cell phones, streaming and visual arts. Knowing the skills of video and how to tell a factual story by interviewing, editing, shooting, etc., are important skills to learn.”

For more information, contact Wenger at 662-915-7146 or