Biography: Peter Davis founded Villon Films, which has been independently producing and distributing award-winning films since 1970. With a strong focus on socio-political documentary, the collection spans such issues as government, history, ecology, culture, health and science, women’s issues, biography, and the apartheid period of South African history. Peter Davis has written, produced, and directed more than thirty documentaries to wide acclaim. His work has been shown on every major television network on the globe including CVC, CTV, BBC, CBS, NBC, German Television, and NHK Japan.
Davis was born and raised in England. He completed his master’s studies at Oxford University before emigrating to North America. His early career included positions as scriptwriter for the National Film Board of Canada; director-cameraman for BBC, CBC, Swedish TV, Danish TV, Australian Broadcasting, and WNET; as well as producer for Swedish TV, London’s Rediffusion Television, BBC, CBS, CBC, CTV, Polytel (West Germany), WNET, the United Nations, UNICEF, and C.A.R.E.
The Peter Davis Collection at Indiana University represents thirty years of work. It includes not only films, but also corresponding outtakes, photographs, stills, audiocassettes, and manuscripts, all available for research and study. The South African material spans the period of the most intensive struggle for human rights in that country, and also includes historical work dating from the beginning of the century. Both Peter Davis and Villon Films have won numerous awards.
Anatomy of Violence (1967);
D.H. Lawrence in Taos (1970);
The Selling of the Pentagon (1971);
Hearts and Minds (1974);
This Bloody, Blundering Business (1975);
South Africa: The White Laager (1977);
Generations of Resistance (1980);
Getting the Most from Your Garden (1981);
Middletown: Second Time Around (1982);
Stocking Up (1982);
Winnie and Nelson Mandela (1986);
Rise and Fall of the Borscht Belt (1986);
In Darkest Hollywood: Cinema and Apartheid (1993 – Peter Davis, Daniel Riesenfeld);
Nelson Mandela: Prisoner to President (1994);
Side by Side, Women against AIDS in Zimbabwe (1995).