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Participant's Diane Weyermann Lauded By IndieWire

EVP of Documentary Film Called One of The Powerful Women Shaping And Determining Many of Today's Best Documentaries

Documentary, Now: Three Rock Stars Who Run The Fast-Changing Nonfiction World

IndieWire  - October 24, 2016

By Anne Thompson


The Academy will announce its list of Oscar-eligible documentaries this week, a field that counted just 82 entries in 2005; last year, there were 124. And along with this growth comes a new attribute for the much-admired/often ignored genre: Power.

Under Sheila Nevins, HBO led the way in showing how documentaries could draw audiences with nonfiction programming that’s skillful, dynamic, and relevant. Under Lisa Nishimura, Netflix upped the ante with deep-pocketed algorithms that not only proved audiences craved this content (after all, documentaries are the original reality TV), but also guided exactly where those viewers could be found, and what they wanted to see. And while social justice has always been the bailiwick of documentary filmmakers, Diane Weyermann at Participant has given that niche the financing and clout it deserves. Read more.

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Participant MediaAbout Participant Media

Founded in 2004 by Jeff Skoll, Participant Media’s (www.participantmedia.com) content combines the power of a good story well told with opportunities for real world impact and awareness around the most pressing global issues of our time. As an industry content leader, Participant annually produces up to six narrative feature films, five documentary films, three episodic television series, and more than 40 hours of digital short form programming, through its digital subsidiary SoulPancake—all aimed at entertainment that inspires social awareness and engaging audiences to participate in positive social change. Participant’s content and social impact mandate speaks directly to the rise of today’s “conscious consumer,” representing over 2 billion consumers who are compelled to make impactful content a priority focus. Through its worldwide network of traditional and digital distribution, aligned with partnerships with key non-profit and NGO organizations, Participant is positioned uniquely within the industry to engage a rapidly growing audience while bringing global awareness and action to today’s most vital issues.

Participant’s more than 80 films, including Spotlight, Contagion, Lincoln, The Help, He Named Me Malala, The Look of Silence, CITIZENFOUR, Food, Inc. and An Inconvenient Truth, have collectively earned 56 Academy Award® nominations and 12 wins, including Best Picture for Spotlight and Best Foreign Language Film for A Fantastic Woman. Participant’s digital entertainment division, SoulPancake (www.soulpancake.com), is an award-winning provider of thought-provoking, joyful, and uplifting digital content including such widely popular series as Kid President and The Science of Happiness and reaches an audience of nearly 9 million fans. Follow Participant Media on Twitter and on Facebook and Instagram. Follow SoulPancake on Twitter and on Facebook and Instagram.