Digital streaming giant Netflix has expanded its 2018 slate of original documentary shorts with the acquisition of four projects.
Anchoring the Los Gatos, California-based company’s schedule is Derek Peck’s 2018 Academy Awards shortlisted Ram Dass, Going Home (pictured).
Launching April 6, the 31-minute doc profiles Ram Dass, the seminal 1960s cultural figure, spiritual leader and outspoken advocate for death-and-dying awareness, as he approaches the end of life in Maui.
The film was selected as one of 10 non-fiction titles to the Academy Awards 2018 Best Documentary Short Subject shortlist on Dec. 6. The final nominations list will be announced Jan. 23, 2018, with the 90th Academy Awards, to be held on March 4, 2018 at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood, California.
Also scheduled to appear on the SVOD platform in 2018 are The Trader and End Game, both of which will screen at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival in Utah this January.
Directed by Academy Award winning filmmakers Rob Epstein and Jeffrey Friedman, End Game follows visionary medical practitioners working on the edge of life and death. End Game launches across the platform on May 4.
Also making its premiere at Sundance is Tamta Gabrichidze’s The Trader, winner of the Best Short Documentary Award at Toronto’s Hot Docs Film Festival. The short follows Gela in his travels around rural the Eastern European country of Georgia. He sells secondhand clothes and household items from the back of his minibus while searching the countryside for potatoes, which are far more valuable than money.
The 22-minute Georgian doc premieres across Netflix on Feb. 9.
Uraaz Bahl’s Ladies First, meanwhile, will debut on March 9. The 39-minute doc short shares the story of a girl born into abject poverty in rural India who becomes the number one archer in the world over a four-year period.
“We are proud to showcase stories from around the globe, told by filmmakers who help us see the world from unique and important new vantage points,” said Lisa Nishimura, VP of original documentary programming at Netflix, in a statement. “This impressive and diverse slate of documentary shorts illustrates how filmmakers, both acclaimed and emerging, can deftly transport us into some of the most transcendent, enriching, raw and unexpected moments in life.”