Producers Ezra Edelman and Caroline Waterlow accepted the award Sunday night for the sweeping portrait of the trial of the century, which gripped viewers for all of its epic 8 hours. Produced by ESPN’s 30 For 30, it has been seen by upwards of 50 million viewers, proving that quality films can have a mass appeal, especially when the subject is one that fascinated so many people.
“I want to thank the Academy for acknowledging this untraditional film,” Edelman said. He dedicated the win to Ron Goldman and Nicole Brown.
“O.J.: Made In America” tells the story of the O.J. Simpson trial, beginning with Simpson’s college football years and ending with his the little known story of his later days, which eventually led to his being arrested for armed robbery of his own memorabilia. Edelman amassed a stunning number of participants, from original jurors to members of Simpson’s defense team, as well as prosecutor Marcia Clark.
Other nominated films were Ava DuVernay’s “13th,” Raoul Peck’s “I Am Not Your Negro,” Gianfranco Rossi’s “Fire At Sea,” and Roger Ross Williams’ “Life, Animated.”
Edelman previously produced three HBO sports documentaries: “Magic & Bird: A Courtship of Rivals,” “The Curious Case of Curt Flood,” and the Emmy Award-winning “Brooklyn Dodgers: Ghosts of Flatbush.” This is the first Oscar for the director.