Kirk Wolfinger began his work in the film industry in the 1980’s and has since produced and directed numerous critically acclaimed documentary programs. Awards of note: the George Foster Peabody Award (Moon Shot- series) and 2 News and Documentary Emmy Awards (Bioterror) (Coma, The Journey Back). Kirk’s reputation as a energetic director of real people from every walk of life in real environments on every continent, makes him highly sought after both as head of Lone Wolf’s productions and as a freelance director.
Called upon by National Geographic , Wolfinger stepped in to take on two episodes of their upcoming Blue Chip series, Alien Deep with Bob Ballard. Recent broadcast work include Titanic At 100 for History, which garnered a 2.0 for the network in April. He simultaneously produced Titanic In 3-D for History and Sky TV for European broadcast. In 2011, he produced and directed specials for National Geographic Channel (Alien Deep, World’s Oldest Child, Great Lakes Ghost Ship, Star Clock B.C) and a four part series for History (Underwater Universe). Past successes include executive producing and directing 35 episodes of History’s series Deep Sea Detectives and several episodes of History's Tougher In Alaska. Two specials on the world’s most famous shipwreck, Titanic, for History's Titanic's Achilles Heel, and the history-changing documentary Titanic's Final Moment's: Missing Pieces. Other recent broadcast credits include a two hour History special based on Gene Krantz' book Failure Is Not An Option, and the sequel, Beyond the Moon. Other Lone Wolf productions helmed by Wolfinger include the NOVA programs Pocahontas Revealed, To The Moon, and Hitler's Lost Sub—the latter became the inspiration for the bestseller Shadow Divers).
In 2009, Wolfinger released his 90-minute independent feature documentary The Rivals. It tells the story of a high school football rivalry between two communities in Maine, one wealthy, one poor and the life lessons the kids learned between the goal posts.. The Rivals won Best Picture (Phoenix Film Festival), Best Documentary (Los Angles Real Film Festival), Audience Award (Wood's Hole Film Festival), and a Silver Chris (Columbus Film Festival), as well as a host of Official Entries in festivals across the country. The film was purchased by Smithsonian Network and premiered in September of 2010.
Lone Wolf productions have 7 Primetime and News and Documentary Emmy nominations, IDA, Columbus Intl, several Tellys, a Cine Masters, and a flock of Cine Golden Eagle awards.
Prior to founding LWDG, Kirk worked with Varied Directions International as series producer and director for Turner's highly acclaimed original series, Moon Shot: The Inside Story of America's Race to the Moon. In addition, he also produced Portrait of Castro's Cuba for TBS, and two episodes of the PBS series Making Sense of the Sixties. Some of Kirk's later work at Varied Directions included Submarine!, Daredevils of the Sky, Titanic's Lost Sister, Battle Alert In The Gulf, The Beast of Loch Ness and Lincoln's Secret Weapon, and all episodes of WGBH's science series, NOVA.
Wolfinger founded his film company, Lone Wolf Documentary Group, with his wife and fellow filmmaker, Lisa Wolfinger, in 1997. Over the past 15 years they have assembled a team of talented professionals who have a passion for filmmaking and a desire to live and work in one of the most vibrant and scenic cities in the country: Portland, Maine. No individual film Kirk has made gives him as much satisfaction as the company he and Lisa helped to create.
Lone Wolf Documentary Group
Lone Wolf DG is recognized as one of the premiere shops in the country for top-shelf documentary and reality based programming having produced dozens of hours for each of the major cable and most of the broadcast television outlets . All the while operating from their own buildings in South Portland , Maine on the beautiful New England coast.
Over the years the Lone Wolf has expanded from 3 to as many as 20 fulltime staff annually averaging 4 to 5 million dollars in gross revenues. Wolfinger’s responsibilities have included both the artistic as well as the operational guidance of Lone Wolf. He has long been a highly sought after director of documentaries and especially expedition driven programs. His adventures allowed him to film on all the continents from boats to swamps to jungles to deserts of ice and sand. He understands how to get dramatic story from any situation. Equally important, he understands how to motivate and manage a film crew under extreme conditions and bring back award winning material. In 15 years LWDG has never failed to please the client and gain repeated business.
Even as he continues to work in the field, he has kept the overall operation and success of the company as a constant focus. He concentrates his efforts on managing the creative talent and developing and pitching new projects. His energy and enthusiasm translates into dynamic presentations when he is describing new projects to potential clients and, in his 15 years running LWDG, he has hired and managed dozens of talented filmmakers and operational staff. He has long seen himself more as a mentor than a boss and that attitude has resulted in tremendous loyalty from the core group of a dozen filmmakers who have combined to produce Lone Wolf’s success since its inception.
Perhaps there is no better way to understand Kirk’s abilities as filmmaker and business manager than to realize that all the productions, the awards, and the revenues have been generated while operating from South Portland, Maine, far from the centers of documentary and reality filmmaking . Lone Wolf ‘s reputation makes them highly sought after for high profile projects, projects that have come into artistic trouble. It follows that when clients have a project that must absolutely succeed artistically and financially, Lone Wolf frequently gets the call.
While he considers himself a very good filmmaker, Kirk sees his real talent as a team builder and leader. Besides the staff at LWDG, he has a vast network of clients, freelance artists, and collaborators who he has established long and trusted relationships with.