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THE FOURTH ESTATE

Synopsis

This documentary series about The New York Times in the Trump era illuminates critical issues facing journalism today. A chief task for The Times, long considered the "newspaper of record," is to find the best way to accurately and honestly cover this unconventional president, even as he tries to undermine them. Through extraordinary access and exclusive interviews, Oscar®-nominated filmmaker Liz Garbus chronicles the tenacious men and women in the trenches who are fighting for the freedom of the press and America's right to know.

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The Filmmakers

Liz Garbus Director

Two-time Oscar Nominee, two-time Emmy Winner, Peabody Winner, Grammy Nominee, and DGA-Nominated director Liz Garbus is one of the most celebrated American documentary filmmakers working today. Garbus’ docuseries The Fourth Estate, a Showtime original, nominated for a 2018 Emmy for Outstanding Documentary or Nonfiction Series, follows The New York Times reporters covering the Trump Presidency. What Happened, Miss Simone?, a Netflix original, was nominated for a 2016 Oscar for Best Documentary Feature, received a Peabody Award, and six Emmy nominations including Best Directing. It took home the Emmy Award for Best Documentary or Nonfiction Special. The film delves into the life of Nina Simone, drawing from more than 100 hours of never-before-heard audiotapes, rare concert footage, and archival interviews. 

Past work includes Garbus’ most recent film, A Dangerous Son (HBO, 2018). Other works include Nothing Left Unsaid: Gloria Vanderbilt & Anderson Cooper (HBO) which had its world premiere at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival, Love, Marilyn, which was a Gala Premiere at the 2012 Toronto Film Festival and released worldwide by StudioCanal and HBO. In 2011 her film Bobby Fischer Against the World opened the Premiere Documentary section of the Sundance Film Festival, and won a prestigious UK Grierson Award for Best Cinema Documentary and earned an Emmy nomination for Best Doc. Garbus’ first documentary film, The Farm: Angola, USA, won the Grand Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival, was awarded ten other festival and critics’ awards, and was nominated for an Oscar in 1998. Other films as director include: There's Something Wrong with Aunt Diane (HBO, 2011), Girlhood (Wellspring, 2003), and as producer Street Fight (PBS, Oscar Nominated, 2005), Ghosts of Abu Ghraib (HBO, Emmy for Best Doc, 2007), and Killing in the Name (HBO, Oscar nominated, 2010). 

Jenny Carchman Producer and Co-Director

Jenny Carchman is an award-winning documentary filmmaker. Most recently, she was the producer and co-director of Showtime's Emmy-nominated series, The Fourth Estate, as well as a follow-up short called The Family Business: Trump and Taxes. Jenny also produced and directed the award-winning series, We Are Witnesses, for The New Yorker and The Marshall Project. The series was nominated for an Emmy and won numerous awards including the 2018 Edward R Murrow Award. Jenny produced the Grammy-nominated, six-part series Long Strange Trip which was short-listed for the 2017 Academy Award and directed the documentary film, Enlighten Us. She produced several documentaries and special projects for Academy-Award winning director Martin Scorsese (Public Speaking and George Harrison: Living in the Material World).  Her other producing credits include KOCH, Citizen Jane: Battle for the City, One Nation Under Dog and several films for Frontline.

Justin Wilkes Producer

Justin Wilkes is an Academy Award-nominated and multiple Emmy and Peabody-winning producer known for a wide range of feature documentaries and television series including the Oscar-nominated and Emmy-winning film, What Happened, Miss Simone?, Oscar-nominated, Paradise Lost 3: Purgatory, Metallica: Some Kind of Monster, Emmy-winning Under African Skies, Jay-Z: Made in America, Keith Richards: Under the Influence, Whitey: The US vs. James J. Bulger, Hamilton’s America and the SXSW award-winning Judd Apatow/Michael Bonfiglio’s May It Last: A Portrait of the Avett Brothers. Television credits include Abstract: The Art of Design, Cold Blooded: The Clutter Family Murders, Emmy-winning Park Bench with Steve Buscemi, America Divided, Iconoclasts, Oprah’s Master Class, MARS, Year Million, Bobby Kennedy for President, and both 2018 Emmy-nominated My Next Guest Needs No Introduction with David Letterman, and The Fourth Estate. Prior to joining Imagine, Justin was the long-time President of Entertainment and Partner at RadicalMedia.

Festivals & Awards

Tribeca Film Festival

2018

For the journalists at The New York Times, the election of Donald Trump presented a once in a generation challenge in how the press would cover a president who has declared the majority of the nation’s major news outlets “the enemy of the people.” Oscar-nominated filmmaker Liz Garbus witnessed the inner workings of journalism and investigative reporting from the front lines during this administrations’ first history-making year. 

—Cara Cusumano

+ Festival Website

Reviews

"Engrossing...Liz Garbus [is] one of the finest documentary filmmakers working today."”

-Hank Stuever, The Washington Post

"THE FOURTH ESTATE is a weapon against fake news."”

-Nick Romano, Entertainment Weekly

"Mandatory viewing."”

-Frank Scheck, The Hollywood Reporter