For nearly four decades, White Mountain Films has covered the globe, filming in often remote locations that stretch from the plains of Africa to the Antarctic, capturing stories of subjects that range from bodybuilders, to robots on Mars, to the Vietnam War.
A pioneer of the theatrical documentary, George Butler, President and Creative Director of White Mountain Films, believes that true, unscripted stories, written, filmed, edited, and scored with the highest production values, can hold their own aesthetically and dramatically in conventional movie theaters. Honed by Butler’s vision, White Mountain Films’s movies have been outstandingly well-received for their rare combination of artistic, educational and entertainment value, and their power to transport audiences to unimagined worlds.
GEORGE BUTLER, President and Founder
Born in Chester, England in 1943, Butler was raised in Wales, Somalia, Kenya, and Jamaica. He was educated at Groton, University of North Carolina, and received an M.A. in Creative Writing from Hollins College in Virginia.
In 1968, while working as a reporter for Newsweek, Butler was drafted. Objecting to the war in Vietnam, he joined VISTA (the domestic Peace Corps) and was sent to the inner city of Detroit where he founded a successful community newspaper, The Oakland Lion. Continuing his activities in the peace movement, in 1971 Butler co-edited with David Thorne and US Senator John Kerry The New Soldier, a highly praised book about the Vietnam Veterans Against War.
In 1972, a photo assignment for Life magazine to cover the Mr. Universe Contest in Baghdad led to the publication of Pumping Iron: The Art and Sport of Bodybuilding (Simon and Schuster, 1974), and inspired Butler to make a theatrical documentary on the subject. Although he had great difficulty convincing many that body-builders and their Austrian-accented star performer could hold the screen, his eventual movie Pumping Iron launched Arnold Schwarzenegger, put bodybuilding and the gym business on the map, and became a classic film.
That same year, George Butler established White Mountain Films, a company named for the White Mountains of New Hampshire, where he makes his home and office.