An extensive array of non-fiction titles will be launched at this year’s Digital MIPTV online spring market, running April 12-16. Ahead of the excitement, Realscreen presents the second in a series of roundups highlighting some of the titles being shopped.
CARGO FILM & RELEASING
The New York-based distributor will present a number of films to buyers at this year’s virtual event.
Kim A. Snyder’s Us Kids (pictured), an official selection of the Sundance Film Festival, covers the 18 months of March For Our Lives, a global youth movement formed in the wake of the mass shooting at Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida on Feb. 14, 2018, in which 17 people died.
The 98-minute film, executive produced by Cher, includes many of the central figures in the movement including Emma Gonzalez and David Hogg.
Father of Cyborgs, meanwhile, tells the story of neurologist Phil Kennedy, who made global headlines in the late 1990s by connecting the brain of a paralyzed man to a computer. In 2014, he shocked the medical and scientific community and his family when he traveled to Belize to implant his own brain in an attempt to continue his research — an act that nearly incapacitated him for life. Now, the controversial inventor wonders if the field he pioneered may lead to unintended consequences.
The film, directed by David Burke, is available in 75 minute and 60 minute versions.
Finally, the 50-minute film Surviving Sinaga – directed by George Attwood and Callum Roe — examines the crimes of serial rapist Reynhard Sinaga, including interviews with Sinaga’s last victim who helped police capture him, the Guardian journalist who covered the disturbing trial, and the lead prosecutor on the case who sent Sinaga away for life.
Sydney-headquartered Flame Distribution, part of Flame Media, will be presenting more than 100 hours of new programming from a slate of documentary and factual content at the market.
Titles include the premium three-part docuseries Life in Colour with David Attenborough, produced by Humble Bee Films and SeaLight Pictures for the BBC, Netflix, Channel 9 and Stan. Presented by the natural history icon, the series reveals the ways animals use colour.
Elsewhere, Yellowstone: Super Volcanoes (1 x 90 minutes/2 x 50 minutes) explores a powerful threat that lies seven miles below America’s most famous national park, Yellowstone, where a super-eruption could plunge the world into a nuclear winter. The film is produced by Wildflame Productions for Discovery+ and Channel 5.
Flame’s catalog also features a selection of new factual titles such as The Bizarre Pet Vets (6 x 60 minutes) produced by Metamorflix for Channel 9, which sees James Haberfield and his team apply their exotic expertise to treat the most bizarre and beloved animals in Australia.
The distributor will also be debuting Kids: An Instruction Manual (6 x 30 minutes), produced by Ruckus Productions for TVNZ, which offers viewers insight into six relatable parenting issues including sleeping, differing parenting styles, solo parenting, kids on devices, anxiety and temperament. The series is also available to be licensed as a format.
RED ARROW STUDIOS INTERNATIONAL
Among the titles being shopped by the global distributor, Stealing the Show! (Florida Entertainment for ProSieben, Germany) presents a twist on the quiz show format that offers contestants a chance to steal the show.
Three celebrity contestants and a member of the public all compete to beat the existing host at their own game. Contestants are quizzed across nine categories, divided into three rounds. After each round, the losing contestant leaves, until only one is left to go head-to-head with the host in the final. Winning the show means that in the next episode they get to play quiz master, deciding everything from the theme and tone of the show, to the rules of the game — with the panel of contestants including the previous, defeated host.
Elsewhere, in each episode of Secret Treasures of the Museum (Snowman Production for DR, Denmark), two celebrities with a shared passion embark on a cultural quest to research, curate and ultimately create an exclusive new exhibition for the general public.
6 x 60-minute factual series Behind History (WildBear Entertainment for Kabel Eins Doku, Germany) will take an in-depth look at the stories behind some of the most momentous events in history, with each episode focusing on a single theme — including “War,” “Fame” and “Leaders” — and telling six unique stories.
Also joining Red Arrow’s slate, Surviving Australia (4 x 60 minutes; Wildbear Entertainment for Nine, Australia) explores the many dangers of the “land down under,” from death-rolls to droughts, bushfires, brown snakes, floods, funnel webs, stingers and sharks.
Survivors recount how they narrowly escaped death, while experts separate fact from fiction to offer the best survival tactics when facing life-threatening scenarios. Every episode features archival footage of some of Australia’s most dangerous situations.