INQUIRER: GENE ROBERTS AND THE GOLDEN AGE OF NEWSPAPERS tells the story of the legendary newspaper editor Gene Roberts, often called the best editor in the country at a time when newspapers had unprecedented resources and impact. Roberts managed to turn the Philadelphia Inquirer – possibly the worst big-city paper in the country in the 1960s – into one of the very best. This film shows how he did it and how his career traced the arc of the rise and fall of American newspapers. This is a fascinating portrait of one man’s amazing career and a primer on how a robust press nurtures democracy.

About the Directors


David is an Austin-based filmmaker with a passion for cinematography and documentary film. He began his career as a newspaper reporter, but honed his technical skills working as a camera operator, focus puller and gaffer on notable documentary features such as The UnforeseenBe Here to Love MeThe Devil and Daniel JohnsonYou’re Gonna Miss Me, Nuclear Family, Troop 1500, and Letter From Waco, to name just a few. David produced and directed his first documentary feature, The Hot Shoe, in 2004.  In 2011, David was Co-Producer and Director of Photography on Better This World, which was broadcast on the prestigious PBS series, POV. He was cinematographer on two recent PBS documentaries, By the River of Babylon: An Elegy for South Louisiana and Through the Repellant Fence: A Land Art Film. Most recently, David shot the feature documentary Richard Linklater: Dream is Destiny which premiered at Sundance in 2016


Mike is an award-winning filmmaker and graphic artist whose work has screened at festivals around the world and has been broadcast nationally. In 2011, he produced the critically acclaimed feature documentary Better This World, which premiered at SXSW and was named “Best Documentary” at the Gotham Independent Film Awards.  In 2009, Mike co-produced and served as director of photography on the feature doc Blaze Foley: Duct Tape Messiah, a revealing look at the life of a Texas songwriter and folk hero.  As a graphic designer, Mike has created titles and graphics for numerous films, including the feature documentaries After Tiller (2013), A Fragile Trust (2013), By the River of Babylon: An Elegy for South Louisiana (2014), 61 Bullets (2014), Very Semi-Serious (2015), Vegas Baby (2016), and Richard Linklater: Dream is Destiny (2016).  Most recently, Mike produced and directed “The Supreme Court v. the American Voter,” a short film about voting rights for the New York Times.

More about Fiscally Sponsored Projects

INQUIRER: GENE ROBERTS AND THE GOLDEN AGE OF NEWSPAPERS is a fiscally sponsored project of the Austin Film Society. You can make a donation to this project using the “Donate to this Project” button above. You will receive a letter acknowledging your gift to the Austin Film Society on behalf on the project. Since AFS is a non-profit organization, your donation may be deducted from your taxes as a charitable contribution under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Service code.

How to make a check donation:
The checks must be made out to “Austin Film Society” and have “Mike Nicholson’s INQUIRER” written clearly on the memo section of the check. Please send checks to:

Austin Film Society
1901 E 51st St
Austin, TX 78723

For more information about our fiscal sponsorship program, click here. If you have any questions, contact our Interim Artist Services Manager, Zach Endres at

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Thanks To Our Annual Sponsors