Tag Archive: Documentary

  1. Banijay Rights boards Lifetime and A&E documentary event JANET.

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    Banijay Rights today announces it has acquired global distribution rights to JANET., Lifetime and A&E’s two-night, four-hour documentary event celebrating the 40th anniversary of Janet Jackson’s first album.


    With full unprecedented access to the music icon and no subject off limits, JANET. is an intimate, honest and unfiltered look at the singer’s untold story.


    Banijay-owned, UK-based Workerbee has been filming the incredible documentary for five years and has been granted exclusive access to archival footage and Janet’s never-before-seen home videos, along with star-studded interviews.


    Executive produced by Janet Jackson, Randy Jackson and Academy Award-winner Kevin MacDonald (The Last King of Scotland, Whitney), JANET. will air in early 2022 on Lifetime and A&E, two of the flagship channels of the A+E Networks portfolio, with Banijay Rights securing international distribution rights to the series.


    Cathy Payne, CEO, Banijay Rights, said: It’s easy to run out of superlatives to describe Janet Jackson – a truly global superstar with a startling career and fascinating life. This ground-breaking documentary series gives a deep insight into her world, and we are excited to take this project out to the international market.”


    JANET. is produced for Lifetime and A&E by Workerbee and AEC (Associated Entertainment Corporation). Executive Producer for Workerbee is Rick Murray, with Ben Hirsch as Director. Brie Miranda Bryant serves as Executive Producer for A+E networks.


    With no stone left unturned, JANET. lifts the lid on her private life for the very first time and reveals the most intimate moments of the star ever caught on camera, charting her immense successes but also incredibly tragedies.


    The event series joins Janet as her family is going through another extremely difficult time, mourning the loss of her father Joseph, the pivotal figure in the Jackson dynasty. The documentary details Janet’s return to the world stage following a sudden break from music. Speaking like never before, Janet also discusses everything including her Superbowl appearance with Justin Timberlake in 2004, the death of her brother Michael and becoming a mother later in life. And with her own romantic relationship having broken down, she starts to look back at her own life and reflect on her fight to the top.


  2. Banijay Productions Germany Establishes New Documentary Unit, Doc. Banijay

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    Banijay Productions Germany GmbH confirms it has expanded its portfolio into documentary series with new label, Doc.Banijay. The new entity is set to be led by Executive Producer Marc Schlömer, who reports to Banijay Productions Managing Director, Arno Schneppenheim.


    Marc Schlömer has spent 20 years at broadcaster ARD as a Bundesliga football league commentator, and as the author of documentaries including Das Leben ist ein Hauch. During his time there, he was awarded a German Television Award for his reports for WDR magazine, Sport Inside. Schlömer is also known for addressing climate change and socio-politics topics, having produced projects for ARD-Weltspiegel and Swiss Television. These are areas which he will continue to tackle through the Banijay-backed Doc unit.


    Schlömer is renouncing his participation as a reporter at the Olympic Games but will maintain his broadcasting roles for ARD at the European Football Championship. Additionally, he will continue to contribute to Sport Inside and the online series, “No Sports!?”, for WDR.


    Other genres, including Factual, Reality and Comedy will continue to be led by Banijay Productions Germany’s Creative Director, Katrin Heller.


    Marc Schlömer: “For me, the fact that I get the chance to co-found and build a docu-department within Europe’s largest production group is an honour. I am grateful to the ARD managers for allowing me to step back from upcoming tasks in the summer so that we can get started straight away at Banijay Productions Germany.”


    Arno Schneppenheim, Managing Director of Banijay Productions Germany: “I have long been interested in the genre of journalistic documentation and with brilliant talent such as Marc leading, we have the perfect expert to create this new arm within Banijay Productions Germany.”

  3. Banijay Rights Acquires Premium Feature Doc Thomas Markle: My Story

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    Banijay Rights, the leading distribution arm of Banijay Group, today announces that it has successfully acquired the rights to the exclusive Thomas Markle: My Story, featuring up-to-the-minute, first person insight into the one of the biggest international news stories this year; the decision by the Duke and Duchess of Sussex to step down from royal duties.

    The just-inked deal sees Banijay Rights secure the international rights to Thomas Markle: My Story (1 x 90 mins) from Alaska TV for Channel 5, excluding US and Canada. Commissioned by Daniel Pearl (Leaving Neverland) and executive produced by double BAFTA award-winning Paul Sommers, this sensitive and respectful one-off special will air on Channel 5 in the UK today (22 January).

    Coming bang up to date with reaction to the most recent worldwide headlines, Meghan Markle’s father, Thomas Markle, is telling his side of the story for the first ever time in this premium feature documentary.

    With first person testimony and his never-before-seen archive of stills and videos of Meghan, he will reveal his version of events which led him to be the Grandfather of a boy he has never met but is seventh in line to be King of the United Kingdom.

    Andreas Lemos, Commercial Director, Factual at Banijay Rights, comments, “We are thrilled to be bringing this remarkable historical record to international broadcasters and platforms worldwide which comes from an experienced and award-winning creative team. Set to be one of the most headline making feature documentaries of the year, this is first and foremost a stunning and poignant film from a father to his daughter, as she and her husband step down from royal duties, offering a unique insight into the decision that shocked the world.”

    Paul Sommers, Managing Director, Alaska TV, said, “Being able to make a high-quality feature documentary which balances revelation and sensitivity, on such a global and topical current news story, is something we are very proud of.”

  4. Wonder to Make Billy Connolly Travelogue For ITV

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    Wonder, a Banijay Group Company, today announces it has been commissioned to make a 3×60’ documentary series, Billy Connolly’s Great American Trail for ITV.


    The epic three-part programme will see Billy Connolly telling the incredible story of the Scottish people in America. He will be travelling off the beaten track to places in the US rarely seen or heard about, letting audiences see the ‘land of the free’ through the eyes of one of Britain’s favourite comedians.


    Billy Connolly’s Great American Trail will follow the migratory journey of the Scots, beginning in Plymouth where the Mayflower pilgrims first landed and finishing in Nashville, Tennessee. The show will explore the indelible footprint the Scots have left on American history through music, football, gangsters, real-life moonshiners and US Presidents with Scottish heritage.


    Mike Reilly, Executive Producer at Wonder said: “This series will show a side to America and to Billy Connolly that has never been seen before. It is a privilege to be working with such an amazing talent, and to bring his unique view of the world to our screens.”



    Billy Connolly’s Great American Trail was commissioned by Jo Clinton Davis, Controller of Factual, ITV and is Executive Produced by Mike Reilly is at Wonder. Billy Connolly’s Great American Trail will be distributed globally by Banijay Rights.














  5. CBC Picks up Two Series from Banijay Rights

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    Banijay Rights, the leading distribution arm of Banijay Group, today announces that the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC), Canada’s national public broadcaster, has picked up two of its series, The Operatives and Saving Lives at Sea, for documentary Channel.


    The deal, which was confirmed today at MIPTV in Cannes, will see AMO Media’s The Operatives, 10 x 60’, and Blast! Film’s Saving Lives at Sea, 12 x 60’, travel to Canada on documentary Channel, where the broadcaster has secured Pay TV and Video on Demand (excluding TVOD) rights to the titles.


    Andreas Lemos, VP Acquisitions, Co-Productions & North America Sales Banijay Rights, said,

    “We’re thrilled that a broadcaster as prestigious as the CBC will be our Canadian partner on these two fantastic factual series. Both shows combine great educational take-out with fantastic entertainment and a worthy message celebrating all-important environmental and life-saving work.”


    Sandra Kleinfeld, Senior Director, Documentary, CBC, added, “We’re pleased to be working with Banijay Rights and look forward to sharing these titles with viewers across Canada on  documentary Channel. With their topical subject matter, The Operatives and Saving Lives at Sea will make great additions to documentary Channel’s lineup of fascinating and thought-provoking titles from Canada and around the world.”


    Saving Lives at Sea was produced by Blast! Films in the UK for BBC2. This series reveals how an army of ordinary people give up their own free time to staff more than 200 Royal National Lifeboat Institution lifeboat stations right across the UK. 24 hours a day, whatever the weather, the volunteers are ready to launch their boats and race to the rescue within minutes of a cry for help coming.


    The series has been picked up by Top TV’s Choice Channel in New Zealand, TV2 in Denmark, RTE in Ireland and Canalife in Portugal, for its S+ Channel.


    The Operatives features an elite team of former military commandos who travel the world bringing poachers and environmental criminals to justice. The team braves environments from shark-infested waters to jungle airstrips, risking imprisonment and injury in order to gather video evidence to take down people who harm endangered wildlife.


    Produced by AMO Media, The Operatives was first broadcast in the US on Pivot TV and has been sold to; Top TV’s Choice Channel in New Zealand, Globosat in Brazil, AMC in Portugal and Spain, Discovery Corporate Services in Middle East, Northern Africa and Poland, Sony Pictures Television in CEE, Outside Television in the US and Lensmedia in China.


    This latest announcement follows on from CBC’s recent acquisition of series 1 and 2 of The Detectives, 7x 60’ in total from Banijay Rights. Produced by Minnow Films for BBC Two, the factual title was renamed The Manchester Detectives, for CBC’s documentary Channel, when it aired earlier this year.

  6. Banijay Rights Lifts off with Sales of Apollo 8: The Mission That Changed the World and Announces MIPTV Launches

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    Banijay Rights, the leading distribution arm of Banijay Group, announces a raft of international sales of Apollo 8: The Mission That Changed the World to National Geographic Channel, Discovery Networks, Bell Media, VRT, RUV-Icelandic State Broadcasting and Discovery Corporate Services Ltd, ahead of MIPTV.

    Apollo 8: The Mission That Changed the World, a special one-off documentary produced by factual specialist Touchdown Films, tells the greatest space story of them all. On 21st December 1968, the world held its breath as NASA controversially launched the first-ever manned mission to the Moon. As astronauts William Anders, Frank Borman and Jim Lovell blasted into space, our own planet was in chaos and in desperate need of a lift. Three days later, the Apollo 8 crew captured the first-ever colour photograph of Earth from space and changed our relationship with the world forever.

    Also from Touchdown Films, and launching at MIPTV, is fascinating documentary series Photos That Changed The World (6 x 60′) which takes an uncompromising look at the past century through the eye of a lens.  From great historic events to tragedies and revolutions, these are images that set social changes in motion and transformed the way we live and think. Packed full of stunning archive, stills and exclusive, specially shot interviews with photographers, eyewitnesses, newspaper editors, broadcasters, politicians and historians, Photos That Changed The World explores how these photographs came to be and what happened after the camera shutter closed.

    Further factual series showcasing at MIPTV from Banijay Rights are The Making Of Me (3 x 60’), an up-close and personal look at the experience of transitioning from one gender to another.  A group of people share their own incredibly personal and challenging journey to change gender. From the earliest stages of the initial decision, to the medical consultations and procedures that follow, this series offers an intimate perspective on all aspects of their changing lives.  An RDF Television production for Channel 4.

    Looking For Rembrandt (3 x 60’), a Matchlight production for BBC. To mark the 350th anniversary of the death of legendary Dutch painter Rembrandt, this enlightening series unravels two mysteries about the great painter. Firstly, how did an incendiary talent like Rembrandt, end up in a pauper’s grave? How could an artist who once would have been considered rich from the income he received from his art students come to such an ignominious end? Today, Rembrandt is considered one of the most famous artists in European history. In 2015, two of his portraits sold for €160million. Why was his work so often misunderstood in his own lifetime? And why is his work so highly prized today?

    The thought-provoking film, Abused By My Girlfriend (1 x 60’), about a 23 year old man, Alex Skeel, who survived the most abusive relationship with his girlfriend Jordan Worth. This film reveals Alex’s shocking testimony and meets his family and friends who share their stories as they watched him slowly slip away, powerless to stop it. Police described Alex’s case as one of the most extreme cases of domestic violence they had ever dealt with. Jordan was sentenced to seven and a half years in prison becoming the first female in the UK to be convicted of coercive and controlling behaviour.  A Century Films production for BBC Three.

    London: 2000 Years Revealed (4 x 60’), Voltage TV for Channel 5. London is one of the largest and most successful cities on earth, yet 2000 years ago it was an uninhabited swamp. This programme tells the glorious, and sometimes gory, story of the city’s meteoric rise to power: how it faced daring invasions, catastrophic fires and deadly plague, and how it grew from a small Roman trading post to the capital of the British Empire, and ultimately to the thriving megacity we know today.

    Tim Mutimer, CEO at Banijay Rights, commented, “We are delighted that Apollo 8 has already been acquired by a line-up of leading factual networks for pan regional distribution as well as by local channels.  The opportunities for factual programming in the global market are huge right now and we are delighted to be able to offer a new line-up of such high-quality, diverse and thought-provoking programmes at MIPTV.”