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‘Intent to Destroy’ Trailer: An Unflinching Look at the Making of Armenian Genocide Film ‘The Promise’ — Watch

Oscar-nominated director Joe Berlinger charts the exceptional challenges in making a movie about the most denied tragedy in history.

intent to destroy

The director Joe Berlinger.

Tribeca

The Armenian Genocide claimed the lives of 1.5 million Armenians at the hands of the Ottoman Empire from 1915-1917, but the truth about the horrors was suppressed because of America’s diplomatic relationship with Turkey. Even as recently as 2016, when filmmaker Terry George set out to make a narrative feature about the tragedy, the Oscar Isaac-starring “The Promise,” he fielded threats from the Turkish government. Academy Award-nominated director Joe Berlinger was on set to capture the challenges — both artistic and political — in making a movie about the Genocide. In the first trailer for this unflinching documentary, “Intent to Destroy: Death, Denial, and Depiction,” Berlinger weaves interviews with filmmakers and historians into his fascinating behind the scenes footage.

Per the official synopsis: “Berlinger’s cinematic exploration of the tangled web of responsibility that has driven a century of denial by the Turkish government and its strategic allies. Intent to Destroy is a timely reckoning with the large-scale suppression of a historical tragedy. Berlinger confronts the fraught task of shedding light on the Armenian Genocide — whose witnesses and descendants are still fighting to be officially acknowledged as such by the international community — how it was carried out during World War I as the reign of the Ottoman empire drew to a close, and how it laid the groundwork for the genocides that followed.”

Watch the powerful trailer below:

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