Jazz Seen is a feature-length journey through decades of American entertainment history and the remarkable life and talent of jazz photographer William Claxton. The film focuses on the man whose eyes have seen images of people we have all grown up with: film stars, jazz musicians, top models, icons of the American dream. Claxton started his career in the early fifties with a photograph of a young Chet Baker, who turned into a role model for the young rebels of that time. He captured the moments when a young actor turned into Steve McQueen, a saxophone player into Gerry Mulligan. The style of the film is very personal, a mix of interviews with celebrities who recall working together with Claxton.
Julian Benedikt is an actor-turned-director whose fascination with the music of Chico Hamilton, led to his directing a documentary called Dancing to a Different Drummer(1994). This marked the start of his career as a director of documentaries such as Blue Note – A Story of Modern Jazz(1997), which earned him a Peabody Award as well as a Grammy nomination. Other works include a documentary on the photographer William Claxton, Jazz Seen(2001), and Play Your Own Thing - A Story of Jazz in Europe(2006).