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Barbara Kopple

KOPPLE, BARBARA (1946– ), U.S. director-producer. Born in New York City and raised in Scarsdale, New York, Kopple graduated with a degree in psychology from Northeastern University. She began her career by working for documentary filmmakers Albert and David Maysles as an assistant editor. She then co-directed Winter Soldier (1972), a documentary about U.S. soldiers in Vietnam. Her first solo project, Harlan County, U.S.A. (1976), which documented a 1973 coal miners' strike against the Eastover Mining Company in Harlan County, Kentucky, earned Kopple an Academy Award for a feature-length documentary. In 1981, she directed the made-for-television film Keeping On, a fictional story built around a labor dispute in a Southern town. Kopple's American Dream (1991), the story of the Hormel Food strike in the mid-1980s, earned her a second Academy Award and a Directors Guild of America award for outstanding directorial achievement in documentaries. In 1993, she received her second Directors Guild of America award for Fallen Champ: The Untold Story of Mike Tyson. For Wild Man Blues (1997), Kopple followed Woody *Allen around Europe as he toured with his jazz band. In 1998, she released Woodstock '94 and followed up with My Generation (2000), a documentary that explored the differences and similarities of the youth cultures present at the different Woodstock concerts. In 2005, Kopple's Bearing Witness looked at female journalists working in combat zones.