2020 has seen a boost in popularity and production of documentary series. Host Nadia Denton talks about the risks and challenges of producing such unpredictable and timely content with the producers and creators of one of this year’s most-anticipated shows: Philly D.A., an 8-part series about Philadelphia’s progressive lawyer Larry Krasner becoming Philadelphia’s new district attorney. Yoni Brook, Josh Penn and Nicole Salazar discuss their most important and crucial decisions when producing Philly D.A..
They talk about how they decided to make Philly D.A. into a series rather than a film and the growing audience for complex non-fictional serialised content beyond True Crime, how they found their story and access to the protagonist organically by following what was happening in their own neighborhood, how they managed not to fall into the trap of telling a classic hero-story but use their four-year-spanning access to include many perspectives and stories. They compare the levels of freedom and very different financing models of fictional versus docs, and the importance of trusting your gut feelings and telling a local story that might inspire a much bigger audience.
Philly D.A. is part of this year’s Berlinale Series selection [https://www.berlinale.de/en/programme/202108172.html]
Josh Penn is an Academy Award nominated producer, whose films have won over 100 awards, most notably Beasts of the Southern Wild, which won Sundance's Grand Jury Prize and Cannes' Camera d'Or, and was nominated for four Academy Awards.
Yoni Brook, Creator, Director and Producer of Philly D.A., is a twice Independent Spirit-nominated director and cinematographer. His films have screened at Berlinale, New York and Toronto Film Festivals, IDFA and Sundance.
Nicole Salazar, Creator and Producer of Philly D.A., is a Pulitzer grantee and a photographer, videographer and multimedia producer. She worked as a producer for independent TV/radio news hour Democracy Now! And specialises in grassroots movements and urban history.
The Berlinale’s European Film Market is the first international film market of the year, where the film industry starts its business. Industry Insights - The EFM Podcast puts a spotlight on highly topical and trendsetting industry issues, thereby creating a compass for the forthcoming film year. The year-round podcast is produced in cooperation with Goethe-Institut.