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Director's Bio

Robert Gardner, Producer/Director

Over a career that spans 30 years, documentary film producer, director, and writer Robert Gardner has been nominated for an Academy Award and won three National Emmy Awards, four regional Emmys, and a duPont Columbia award for excellence in broadcast journalism from Columbia University. He has also earned honors from the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the Science Journalism Award for Television, and a variety of special awards.

His production company, Gardner Films, has produced for commercial and public television in the United States and internationally for 17 years. He is a member of the Directorís Guild and the Writerís Guild of America, and has lectured on non-fiction television at Johns Hopkins University, Goucher College, The American Film Institute, The American University, and Wesleyan University.

Gardner's best work explores the way ordinary people react to extraordinary events -- the triumph of personal courage in the face of war or poverty, the emergence of human values in times of crisis and change. His historical documentaries feature extensive period re-enactments and complex location production, utilizing robotic jib work, Steadicam, and extreme slow-motion. High production values are a hallmark.

Gardnerís most recently broadcast films include The Barbarians, a four-hour world premiere and marquee special series for The History Channel about the Barbarian invasions of Europe. Supported by an extensive promotional effort, the series produced the second highest ratings in the history of The History Channel. Marketing elements included four-page advertising supplement in The New York Times, full-page ads in Time Magazine, The Washington Post, LA Times, USA Today, ESPN magazine, live radio promotions in 16 markets and three-dimensional billboards in Times Square and Sunset Blvd, Los Angeles.

Gardner has also recently aired a number of films on PBS, including a one-hour documentary biography of Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Elie Wiesel, narrated by Academy Award-winner William Hurt; and Arab and Jew: Return to the Promised Land, a one-hour PBS documentary about the ongoing conflict between the Israelis and the Palestinians, with Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, David K. Shipler. In 2002, PBS also aired Gardnerís three-hour documentary film series called Islam: Empire of Faith. The series was shot on film in Tunisia, Egypt, Israel, Syria, Spain, Turkey, and Iran.

Other credits include two one-hour episodes of the Discovery Channelís top-rated forensic science series, The New Detectives and two one-hour episodes of The FBI Files, as well as an episode of the PBS premier science series NOVA, produced on location in Antarctica.

Other work includes: two one-hour episodes of Time Life Televisionís documentary series, Lost Civilizations, produced for NBCís entertainment division and broadcast on NBC in June 1995. The two episodes, Egypt: Quest for Immortality and Mesopotamia: Return to Eden, were shot on location in Egypt, Iraq, Israel, and Bahrain. The series won a Primetime Emmy in 1996, represented by Egypt: Quest for Immortality.

Gardner Films has also worked in Bolivia, Ethiopia, Egypt, Israel and France on a variety of assignments for National Geographic Television.

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