In this week’s round-up, new non-fiction series and documentaries are slated to debut across PBS long-running doc strand ‘Independent Lens,’ ABC, CBC and VH1.
Canadian pubcaster CBC will look into the puzzling case of a Japanese tourist who disappeared while visiting Yellowknife, the capital city of the Northwest Territories.
Directed by Geoff Morrison, The Missing Tourist documents the mysterious vanishing of Atsumi Yoshikubo in 2014 and the subsequent missing person investigation. The project also traces Yoshikubo’s journey from a small prefecture in Southern Japan to the wilderness of the Canadian North to explore the ways in which the public experiences missing person stories. Produced by Big Cedar Films, the film premieres tonight (March 2) at 9 p.m. ET/PT.
Viacom-owned network VH1, meanwhile, will kick off its star-studded game show VH1 Hip Hop Squares on March 13 at 10 p.m. ET/PT.
Hosted by comedian DeRay Davis, the hip hop version of Hollywood Squares, some of the biggest names in hip hop industry will come together to match wits and test their pop culture knowledge in VH1′s version of the classic game show. Featured in the series are celebrity contestants such as Ice Cube, Amber Rose, Fat Joe, French Montana, Mel B, Nelly, Tyga, T- Pain, Master P, Cedric the Entertainer and Keri Hilson. The series is produced by Ice Cube’s Cube Vision alongside Jesse Collins Entertainment and The Firm.
Shot over the span of nearly three years, the film examines the aftermath of the killing of 20 children between the ages of six and seven, and six adults, in the 2012 mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut.
The film was produced by Maria Cuomo Cole and premiered at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival. Newtown will bow April 3 at 10 p.m. ET/PT on PBS.
Finally, American commercial broadcaster ABC is to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the Los Angeles uprising via Let It Fall: Los Angeles 1982-1992.
The two-hour film from Lincoln Square Productions revisits the highly publicized case of Rodney King – an African American man who was tasered, tackled and brutally beaten by four white LAPD officers in March, 1991. The doc will provide a unique look at the citywide violence that began one year later, on April 29, 1992 when the verdict was announced in the King case and traces the roots of the civil unrest to a decade before the uprising. Let It Fall debuts April 28 at 9 p.m. ET/PT on ABC.