Producers Guild 2018 Documentary Nominees: The Best of 2017

Producers Guild of America Nominee Jane
A scene from ‘Jane’ (National Geographic Creative / Hugo van Lawick)

The Producers Guild of America has announced their nominees for the best documentary films of 2017. Nominees in the PGA’s Theatrical Motion Pictures, Animated Theatrical Motion Pictures, Television Series/Specials, Long Form Programs, and Sports, Children’s and Short Form Programs will be revealed on January 5, 2018. The winners will be announced on Tuesday, January 16, 2018 at an awards ceremony in Los Angeles.

The annual Producers Guild of America Awards recognize “excellence in motion picture and television productions, as well as some of the living legends who shape the profession.”

The 2018 PGA Awards will also include special awards presentations to Milestone Award recipient Chairman of Universal Pictures Donna Langley and David O. Selznick Award recipient Charles Roven.

Producers Guild of America Outstanding Producer of Documentary Motion Pictures Nominees:

Chasing CoralChasing Coral taps into the collective will and wisdom of an ad man, a self-proclaimed coral nerd, top-notch camera designers, and renowned marine biologists as they invent the first time-lapse camera to record coral bleaching events as they happen. With its breathtaking photography, nail-biting suspense, and startling emotion, Chasing Coral is a dramatic revelation that won’t have audiences sitting idle for long.

City of GhostsCity of Ghosts follows the journey of “Raqqa is Being Slaughtered Silently” – a handful of anonymous activists who banded together after their homeland was taken over by ISIS in 2014. With astonishing, deeply personal access, this is the story of a brave group of citizen journalists as they face the realities of life undercover, on the run, and in exile, risking their lives to stand up against one of the greatest evils in the world today.

Cries from SyriaCries From Syria is a searing, comprehensive account of a brutal five-year conflict from the inside out, drawing on hundreds of hours of war footage from Syrian activists and citizen journalists, as well as testimony from child protestors, leaders of the revolution, human rights defenders, ordinary citizens, and high-ranking army generals who defected from the government.

Earth: One Amazing Day – Over the course of one single day, the film tracks the sun from the highest mountains to the remotest islands, from exotic jungles to urban jungles. Astounding breakthroughs in filmmaking technology bring you up close and personal with a cast of unforgettable characters; a baby zebra desperate to cross a swollen river, a penguin who heroically undertakes a death-defying daily commute to feed his family, a family of sperm whales who like to snooze vertically and a sloth on the hunt for love.

Jane – Drawing from over 100 hours of never-before-seen footage that has been tucked away in the National Geographic archives for over 50 years, award-winning director Brett Morgen tells the story of Jane, a woman whose chimpanzee research challenged the male-dominated scientific consensus of her time and revolutionized our understanding of the natural world.

Set to a rich orchestral score from legendary composer Philip Glass, the film offers an unprecedented, intimate portrait of Jane Goodall — a trailblazer who defied the odds to become one of the world’s most admired conservationists.

Joshua: Teenager vs. Superpower – When the Chinese Communist Party alters its promise of autonomy to Hong Kong – handed back to the Chinese government from British rule in 1997 – teenager Joshua Wong decides to fight for his homeland. Rallying thousands of kids to skip school and occupy the streets, and without a long-term plan but with passion to spare, Joshua becomes an unlikely leader in Hong Kong. A remarkable portrait of courage, resilience, and the propulsive power of youthful idealism, Joshua: Teenager vs. Superpower is a chronicle of one young man risking his own future for a greater good.

The Newspaperman: The Life and Times of Ben Bradlee – The film is an intimate journey through the remarkable life of Washington Post executive editor Ben Bradlee, one of the country’s most “dangerous editors – from his remarkable ascent from a young Boston boy stricken with polio to the one of the most pioneering and consequential journalistic figures of the 20th century who was largely credited with taking down President Richard Nixon around the Post’s coverage of the Watergate scandal.

Told primarily in Bradlee’s own words, The Newspaperman features previously unseen home movies, photographs, archival footage and interviews with a who’s who of American journalism, Washington insiders, and family and friends who knew him best, including: Bob Woodward, Carl Bernstein, David Remnick, Henry Kissinger, Norman Lear, Richard Cohen, Robert Redford, Sally Quinn, Tina Brown and Tom Brokaw.