News Roundup: Climate Change Documentaries Breaking Through?

The COP 26 UN Climate Change Conference opens in Glasgow on October 31, bringing urgency to the race to save our planet. Documentary commissioners, producers and distributors have responded with lots of new orders. Does global warming have the urgent audience appeal of programs that address hot button issues like true crime, gender, and social …

QUOLL FARM: A $600k Wildlife hit for ABC Australia, Smithsonian, ZDF/Arte & NHK

Quoll Farm is a classic natural history film about a very cute and little-known Australian marsupial, the Eastern Quoll. It has a gentle conservation message, and like several recent films, notably My Octopus Teacher, there’s a story of human redemption as part of the wildlife package. I was totally charmed by the antics of the …

Who are the documentary buyers? What do they want? How many? Deal highlights and more

Twelve documentary buyers and producers reveal what drives their decisions. Each commissioner is driven by a particular strategy, pipeline and budget ‘sweet spot’. Each producer describes a unique path from concept through funding and production to distribution. Since 2010, the mission of my Documentary Business newsletter has been to reveal how these individual production pathways …

Humboldt: Epic Explorer – A €600,000 Drama Doc from ZDFE, Spiegel TV, Arte and Smithsonian Networks. A Case Study

Humboldt: Epic Explorer is a historical dramatized documentary about the scientist Alexander von Humboldt and his pioneering work in South America. The project was sparked by Andrea Wulf’s best-selling biography, and developed by veteran producer Tilman Remme. It was successfully pitched to European and American commissioning editors at the Science Producers’ Congress 2018 in Stockholm. by …

GREAT INVENTIONS: The development, production & distribution of a 35-episode Science series. A Podcast with ZDF Enterprises’ Nikolas Hülbusch & WMR’s Alan Griffiths

About the Series: A special quality that attracted me to cover GREAT INVENTIONS in my  newsletter and podcast is that this 35-episode series was developed and funded by the distributor, ZDF ENTERPRISES without the typical building block of a financial commitment from a key buyer, usually a major network. ZDF Enterprises invested heavily in the …