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The Weight of Surviving (2011)

Feature Documentary
Director: Etienne Sauret

Coming Soon

Dirty Pictures (2010)

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Feature Documentary
Producer: Etienne Sauret/Sabastian Saville
Director/Camera: Etienne Sauret

The film "Dirty Pictures" began three years ago as a documentary centered on the life and work of noted chemist, Dr. Alexander Shulgin. The examination of Dr. Shulgin's extensive research in the world of psychedelics led to focus not on just him alone but into the work of other scientists and researchers who aim to discover what can be learned about the mind and human behavior in the compounds that make up psychedelics substances and the subsequent potential applications that can be gained from them. Over the past 35 years a select group of people have been quietly engaged in precisely this type of work, leading to a recent resurgence in activity. The film is about them; their findings and motivations, their ideas, and their beliefs as to how to research this particular field can aid in unlocking the complexities of the mind.

Fesitval Laurels for Dirty Pictures

Collateral Damages (2003)

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Feature Documentary
Producer/Director/Camera: Etienne Sauret

Winner of the Special Jury Mention,
SilverDocs AFI/ Discovery Channel Documentary Festival

Official Selection, Copenhagen International Documentary Film Festival
Official Selection, International Human Rights Film Festival

"Collateral Damages" explores the psychological impact 9/11 had on New York City firefighters. Featuring firefighters from Engine 6, Rescue 2, and Engine 285, these men share personal testimonies of the emotional and mental anguish of an aftermath with no end. In addition to its hour-long feature, "Collateral Damages" has more than two hours of extensive special features, including the dismantling of the Rescue 2 rig and never before seen footage of Fresh Kills, the crime scene no one knew about.

"Collateral Damages" has been recently added as a permanent exhibit at both the New York State Museum and the New York City Fire Museum.

The Lazy Man's Zen (1993)

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Feature Documentary
Director: Etienne Sauret
Camera: Etienne Sauret / Kevin Keating / Ellen Kuras
Lynn Noland / Jeremy Pollard

It takes a Zen Monk decades to learn to sit in a quiet room in some unnatural position on his haunches and not be bothered by the joint pain and to lose himself and become empty. That's what meditation is all about. You get on a bike going at 100 miles per hour, you're empty immediately. It's sort of a short cut to focus, a short cut to meditation.

"The Lazy Man's Zen" explores the art of motorcycling in contemporary culture, capturing a wide cross section of world champion motorcyclists to devoted unknowns. This complex sport seeps through all classes of society revealing not only the brotherhood bikers' share, but also the connection between motorcycling and our world today.

"The Lazy Man's Zen" first aired on Discovery in July of 1994 and became of the highest rated shows of that year. It was filmed on location around the world, capturing the Isle of Man, the Bonneville Salt Flats, Sturgis, Mans (France), Laguna Seca (California), and New York City. "The Lazy Man's Zen" was also aired on ORF (Austria) and is available on video both in the United States and Europe.

Too Pure (1993)

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Feature Film
Director: Etienne Sauret
Director of Photography: Peter Fernberger

Official Selection, Hamptons International Film Festival (1995)
Official Selection, Palm Springs International Film Festival (1996)

The bittersweet story of two lovers trying to reconnect six months after declaring the futility of maintaining their relationship largely through electronic communications.

Loosely based on the myth of Orpheus and Eurydice, bad timing frustrates Luke, a New York limousine driver, who thinks only about the reunion with his ex-girlfriend Elyse but continually stymied by the distractions of life in the city.

HBO's "Drug Addiction" (2006)

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Documentary Segment Producer: Etienne Sauret
Director: Eugene Jarecki

This segment from HBO's two-hour documentary special on drug addiction follows cocaine addicts, William and Bobby, both residents of Philadelphia. William speaks of his environment as his main trigger. "This is where I use. It's not just [in my head]. It's here." Bobby discusses the mental struggle, signifying that not trusting his thoughts has only led him to deep and dark places. There's no question that recovering from a life of an addict is a 24/7 job.

The latest research in the field of drug addiction suggests that it is a brain disease. Dr. Anna Rose Childress, Ph. D., a psychologist who directs the VA Addiction Research Center at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, supervises William and Bobby. Childress and clinical assistants use positron emission tomography (PET) scanners to focus on the brain's limbic regions, where cocaine is thought to produce its pleasurable effects by disrupting normal dopamine functioning.

Patients speak daily with therapists about their latest episode of craving, a conversation that catalyzes a trigger state. They are given tools and daily medication to restrain such cravings. Both William and Bobby continue their fight with addiction.

WTC: The First 24 Hours (2001)

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Documentary
Director/Camera: Etienne Sauret

Official Selection, Sundance Film Festival
Official Selection, Manchester Film Festival
Official Selection, MoMA New Directors/New Films
Official Selection, Double Take Film Festival

"The First 24 Hours" began as a raw reflection in the wake of the World Trade Center collapse. There are two versions of the film: an original eleven-minute film, and an extended thirty-minute version. The film was shot over a twenty-four hour period, from the morning of September 11, 2001 to the morning of September 12th.

It is first a witness to the fall of the Twin Towers, begining with the North Tower's gaping hole and the South Tower shrouded in smoke to their inevitable collapse. Secondly, it's an intimate view of Ground Zero and its environs, the smoldering monochromatic site, and its solitary streets.

"The First 24 Hours" was aired on HBO, Cinemax USA, Channel 4 England, Spiegel TV (Germany), Arte, and TF1 (France). The film has been exhibited at The New York Historical Society and has a permanent home at both The New York State Museum and The New York City Fire Museum. It was also released nationwide by New Video and TF1 International.

Billy Green 9/11 (2003)

Documentary
Director/Camera: Etienne Sauret

Official Selection, Los Angeles Film Festival

Retired firefighter Billy Green recounts his personal experience of the morning of September 11th, 2001 in a thirty-minute unedited interview. Born in Queens, New York, this native New Yorker was the last member of Engine 6 to continue to advance up the staircase in the South Tower. After reaching the 37th floor, Green and fellow firefighters, were ordered to evacuate. Billy reached West Street just before the North Tower had collapsed and found himself the sole survivor of his company.

Green reveals the chilling thoughts and sounds of a day that continues to plague him. Billy reached West Street just before the North Tower collapsed. He was the only member of his company to escape in time.

Billy was quickly transported to St. Vincent's hospital where for two days he was treated for contamination of the lungs. After his release from the hospital and a sleepless night at home, Billy rejoined the search effort where he remained for several days.

Further exposure to contaminants since September 11th, aggravated Billy's lung condition. After an incident in November 2003 where he was exposed to some contaminants, a pulmonologist recommended he retire from firefighting. He was assigned to the FDNY's Press Department. Billy has since retired.

September 11th remains ever present for Billy and he continues to suffer from insomnia, flashbacks, and anxiety attacks. He is one of the few firefighters who have openly sought psychological counseling, however.

During his time at the FDNY Press Department, Billy explained, "I've gotten a lot better. But then the last few weeks, since I'm here I've had mixed emotions. I thought I was doing better, but now I'm having trouble sleeping again. I feel like it's a high profile area. It's a target. And I'm just always waiting for something to happen. To happen again."

In a past interview, Billy described an anxiety attack he suffered the week before:

"I was in headquarters the other day and I was walking in the lobby to get a cup of tea. The lobby has revolving glass doors just like the World Trade Center did. And it has these big glass windows and was snowing and windy outside. And the floor in the lobby and the walls are marble, just like the World Trade Center. And I was looking out the window as I'm walking across, and all of a sudden some big slabs of snow fell down on the sidewalk and exploded outside. And I got a flashback. I was in the lobby of the World Trade Center again. Everybody in the lobby looked at me like, "What the hell is wrong with this guy?" But I learn to live with it. It happens for a few seconds, then I realize I'm okay, and I go about my business."

Despite the therapy and his desire to remain with the FDNY, Billy was forced to retire early due to his disability.

"I have mixed feelings. It's tough because I'm close to all the guys there. But then it's almost like a relief. I just don't know what to do. There are a lot of things I'm interested in. I'm looking forward to a more quiet life. Maybe even moving to the country or something. I don't know."

Roswell Decalogue (1997)

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Feature Documentary
Director/Camera: Etienne Sauret



"Roswell Decalogue" explores the idea of extraterrestrial life following the 50th anniversary of the famous Roswell-era U.F.O. crash of July, 1947. The film is made up of documentary footage and the testimonies of Roswell experts. Their ideas about the incident, multi-dimensionality, sacred sites, alien life, time and space, and a divine evolution are built around a framework of commandments.

Bandaid (1994)

Feature Documentary
Director: Etienne Sauret

A film about one woman's search for her birth mother becomes a reconstruction of a family, as well as her history, origins, and sense of self.

The Screaming Headless Torsos (1995)

Live Concert/ Music Video
Director: Etienne Sauret

A multi-camera shoot of this dynamic groups' two-concert show at The Knitting Factory in New York City. A music video for one of the songs, "Jazz and the Teacher", was released on television.

Pull the Plug (2003)

Documentary
Director/Camera: Etienne Sauret

In "Pull the Plug" there are no tricks or visual FX. A camera was set up on a tripod and rolled continuously for nearly two hours at 4 frames per second until the sky sunk into ink black. It is a true fast motion recording, played back 30 frames and time compressed to illustrate how New York disappeared into darkness that evening. Radio commentaries were collected from several different stations and the tracks were cut and layered together to sound as if someone was dialing, scanning the airwaves. Every word, every sentence, every sound is authentic and was broadcast over the air that day. Radio, an obsolete medium, became the only source of information for people since no TV or internet was available.

The film sheds light, or darkness in this case, on a very vulnerable society; modern, sophisticated and yet so fragile, so naked without and indispensable electrical commodity we take for granted. New York dissolves to pitch black, still, unable to function, stopped in its tracks. Pull the Plug demonstrates how government officials would lead us to believe that they are in control in an overwhelming crisis. As their response attests, they are quick to fill the airwaves with empty chatter, spout vague promises of future fixes and eager to place blame. It is time to "Pull the Plug."

Short Films

Director: Etienne Sauret

A series of short films on various sport disciplines broadcasted on American & European television.

"Reminiscence"
"Velvet Lagoon"
"Aqua Carmina Opus 70"
"The Edge and Beyond" (A&E)

Ron Agam

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Director: Etienne Sauret