Robert Flaherty finally releases Nanook of the North. He had spent several years working with filming Nanook and his family, and many of the scenes in the film are staged. While the Inuit long had moved on to using guns, Flaherty had Nanook recreate the traditional practice of catching a seal with a harpoon. While the film met with a positive reception after being rejected by five distributors, Nanook died of starvation that same year.
Grass: A Nation’s Battle for Life
In commenting on Robert Flaherty’s film Moana, John Grierson coins the contemporary use of the term documentary: “Of course Moana, being a visual account of events in the daily life of a Polynesian youth and his family, has documentary value.” The statement appears as part of a film review in the New York Sun on February 8.
Esfir Shub creates The Fall of the Romanov Dynasty (1927) and The Great Road (1927), both compilation documentaries.
Berlin: Symphony of a Great City
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is formed.
Esfir Shub creates The Russia of Nicholas II and Leo Tolstoy (1928), another compilation documentary.
John Grierson directs his first documentary, The Drifters.
Man with a Movie Camera
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences gives out its first awards at a banquet. Best picture goes to Wings. Award categories for documentary will not start for another 13 years.