David Hoffman shares his Sputnik mania

About this talk

Filmmaker David Hoffman shares footage from his feature-length documentary Sputnik Mania, which shows how the Soviet Union’s launch of Sputnik in 1957 led to both the space race and the arms race — and jump-started science and math education around the world.

About David Hoffman

In David Hoffman’s long film career, he’s made documentaries on everything from Amelia Earhardt to B.B. King, from double-dutch jump-roping to F-15 fighter pilots.

Lately, he has become fascinated with the Atomic-era Space Race, turning out a feature-length documentary about the Sputnik era. Sputnik Mania was scored by Thomas Dolby and has played at festivals and theaters around the country.

Documentary filmmaker David Hoffman has been capturing reality for almost 4 decades, following his wide-ranging interests and turning them into films for PBS, The Discovery Channel, A&E, National Geographic. Highlights from his career include the groundbreaking experimental doc King, Murray, which blurred boundaries between truth and fiction as it tracks its subject through a debauched weekend in Las Vegas; A Day With Filmmaker Timmy Page, about a 12-year-old auteur; and his series of films on American indigenous music.

Hoffman suffered a devastating setback in early 2008 when, nine days before TED2008, his home, containing a vast archive from his long and fascinating career, burnt to the ground. His next project: to reframe his life and rebuild.

“I have often tried to understand how David does what he does. After observation, it becomes glaringly simple. He listens! I mean; he really listens, to people and situations.”

Alberto Aquino Alejandro, co-founder, Helio Solut

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About ranman

Design educator with a Masters of Design degree. 32 years of design experience. View all posts by ranman

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