Poitras leaves The Intercept to expand Field of Vision

Laura Poitras is parting ways with the investigative news site to focus on expanding her doc unit Field of Vision, which is now taking anonymous submissions.
September 20, 2016

Laura Poitras‘s documentary unit Field of Vision is switching things up for its fall season.

The Oscar-winning Citizenfour helmer launched the visual journalism site during last year’s New York Film Festival, along with First Look Media, filmmaker AJ Schnack and former Hot Docs programmer Charlotte Cook.

A year later, Field of Vision is parting ways with First Look’s investigative news site The Intercept and is now available via a revamped, stand-alone website.

It has also added a SecureDrop platform for “the anonymous leaking of newsworthy image and video submissions.”

“While many news organizations use technology like SecureDrop, Field of Vision’s is the first that is requesting image and video material specifically related to abuses of power,” the company said in a statement.

Additionally, Poitras is stepping down from The Intercept, which she co-founded with journalists Glenn Greenwald and Jeremy Scahill, to focus on expanding Field of Vision.

In a letter posted at The Intercept Sept. 20, Poitras explained that Field of Vision will remain part of the non-profit First Look Media and continue to collaborate with The Intercept while building partnerships with other outlets and distribution platforms.

“The mission of Field of Vision will remain the same — to commission filmmakers to respond quickly to global events through cinema,” she wrote. “I believe deeply in the power of images to transform how we understand the world.”

Meanwhile, Field of Vision’s fall season of shorts and series will include Yung Chang‘s The Gatekeeper, Emily Ederson’s They Took Them Alive, and Mila Aung-Thwin and Van Royko’s The Vote, which will become available on the site following its premiere at the New York Film Festival.

The season will also feature films by Poitras and Henrik Moltke, Elizabeth Lo and Hito Steyerl, among others, and the the launch of Anders Sømme Hammer’s four-part series about militias and foreign fighters battling Isis in Iraq and Syria.

The company is also teaming with The New Yorker to present an updated version of AJ Schnack’s Speaking is Difficult, an ongoing short film that catalogues mass shootings in the United States. The film now includes segments on the Pulse Nightclub shooting in Orlando and the shooting during a peaceful Black Lives Matter protest in Dallas.

Field of Vision will also publish the expanded version of Stephen Maing‘s Emmy-nominated The Surrender, which premiered on The Intercept, and re-publish The Journey, Matthew Cassel‘s six-part series on Syrian refugees, which originally debuted on The New Yorker‘s website.

About The Author
Barry Walsh is editor and content director for realscreen, and has served as editor of the publication since 2009. With a career in entertainment media that spans two decades, prior to realscreen, he held the associate editor post for now defunct sister publication Boards, which focused on the advertising and commercial production industries. Before Boards, he served as editor of Canadian Music Network, a weekly music industry trade, and as music editor for As content director, he also oversees the development of content for the brand's market-leading events, the Realscreen Summit and Realscreen West, as well as new content initiatives.