On July 24, 2010 thousands of people from around the world submitted video footage in hopes of being selected be part of a feature-length, experimental documentary.  “Life in a Day” features video clips shot only on July 24 that provide insight into the lives of people from all corners of the globe.

The filmmaking team selected from 4,500 hours of submitted footage from 192 countries, and
YouTube and National Geographic teamed up to present the film.

“Life in a Day” premiered at Sundance this January and screened at various venues across the United States on July 24, one year after the videos were taken and submitted.

Kevin Macdonald, the director of the film, participated in a Q&A with audience members at a screening at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City.

Director Kevin Macdonald and Daniel Battsek, president of National Geographic Films, discuss the "Life in a Day" at the New York premiere. Photo by Eva Hill

Macdonald said the film required generosity from participants, because people were sharing their lives without monetary gain. He said the filmmaking team had to work with the footage they were given.

“I wanted the material to speak to me without preconceptions and structure, so characters reappear and add suspense,” he said.

Macdonald referred to the film and the day the footage was taken as a “little, frozen drop of time.”

“You could go back in seven years and get people to film again and see how their lives have changed,” he said.

“Life in a Day” opens in select theaters July 29. Check out the National Geographic version of the trailer below.

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