Hot off the heels off of garnering three Primetime Emmy Award nominations for “Becoming Chaz,” OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network announced today premiere dates for six films from their documentary club. The documentaries will all air monthly on Thursdays from 9-11pm ET/PT.
Below are the titles, dates and synopses (provided by OWN):
“Life 2.0” — August 25
The compelling documentary “Life 2.0” follows a group of people whose lives are dramatically transformed by the virtual world Second Life. They enter a new reality, whose inhabitants assume alternate personas in the form of avatars — digital alter egos that can be sculpted and manipulated to the heart’s desire. The film is foremost an intimate, character-based drama about people who look to a virtual world in search of something they are missing in their real lives. “Life 2.0,” winner of the 2010 Philadelphia Film Festival Best Documentary Feature Award, is an Andrew Lauren Productions, PalmStar Entertainment and OWN presentation. The documentary is produced, directed and edited by Jason Spingarn-Koff; produced by Andrew Lauren and Stephan Paternot; co-produced by Jonathan Shukat.
“Most Valuable Players” — September 8
“Most Valuable Players” focuses on the Freddy Awards, a live television event honoring outstanding high school musical theater in New Jersey and the Lehigh Valley region of Pennsylvania. Demonstrating that arts education encourages the same teamwork, camaraderie and confidence as sports, the film follows three theater troupes on their creative journey to the elaborate award ceremony – the Tony Awards for high school musicals. The film was the winner of the 2011 Nashville Film Festival Documentary Channel Audience Award. A Canyonback Films production, the documentary is directed and produced by Matthew D. Kallis and written and produced by Christopher Lockhart.
“Miss Representation” — October 20
“Miss Representation” brings together some of America’s most influential women in politics, news and entertainment, including Condoleezza Rice, Nancy Pelosi, Katie Couric, Rachel Maddow, Margaret Cho, Rosario Dawson and Gloria Steinem to give audiences an inside look at the media’s message and depiction of women. The film explores women’s under-representation in positions of power by challenging their limited and often disparaging portrayals in the media. “Miss Representation” takes the stand that the media is portraying women’s primary values as their youth, beauty and sexuality – rather than their capacity as leaders. Premiering at the 2011 Sundance Film Festival, The Hollywood Reporter heralded the film as “a relevant and important doc…” The documentary is written and directed by Jennifer Siebel Newsom.
“Crime After Crime” — November 3
“Crime After Crime” is the exclusive documentary film on the legal battle to free Debbie Peagler, a woman sentenced 25 years-to-life for her connection to the murder of the man who abused her. Twenty years later, as she languishes in prison, a California law allowing incarcerated domestic-violence survivors to reopen their cases is passed. Debbie finds her only hope for freedom when two rookie attorneys with no background in criminal law step forward to take her case. Premiering at the 2011 Sundance Film Festival, the Los Angeles Times called the film “a deeply affecting account of the very real effect of political corruption, but also of resilience and grace.” The documentary is directed and produced by Yoav Potash.
“One Lucky Elephant” — December 1
“One Lucky Elephant” follows circus producer David Balding as he struggles to find a nurturing permanent home for Flora, the orphaned baby African elephant he lovingly raised as a “daughter” and made the star of his circus. As Flora approaches adulthood, David realizes that she is no longer happy performing and needs to be with other elephants. The road to Flora’s retirement, however, is a difficult and emotional journey that tests their bond in unexpected ways. The film is both a touching account of a man’s incredible love for a wild animal and a poignant exploration of the critical issues about the future of elephants in captivity and how these issues have affected the life of one very lucky elephant. The film was an Official Selection of the 2010 International Film Festival Amsterdam and winner of the 2010 Woodstock Film Festival James Lyons Award for Best Editing of a Feature Documentary. The documentary is directed by Lisa Leeman, executive produced by Sandbar Pictures and written and produced by Cristina Colissimo and Jordana Glick-Franzheim.
“Louder Than a Bomb” — January 5, 2012
“Louder Than a Bomb” tells the story of four Chicago high school poetry teams as they prepare for and compete in the world’s largest youth slam poetry contest. The film captures the turbulent lives of these unforgettable teenagers; exploring how writing and performing shapes their world. The film was recently named a 37th Annual HUMANITAS Prize finalist in the Documentary Category. The Boston Herald said the documentary “packs a greater emotional punch than any film in current release” and Variety called the film “an affecting and superbly paced celebration of American youth at their creative best.” The documentary is co-directed and produced by Greg Jacobs and Jon Siskel, Siskel/Jacobs Productions.