Four documentaries from RAINmedia won last night at the 36th Annual News & Documentary Emmys — including in the ceremony’s prestigious culminating category, Best Documentary.
United States of Secrets, a three-part investigation of NSA mass surveillance produced alongside The Kirk Documentary Group, took home two Emmys, including the Best Documentary prize. The series was previously honored with the duPont-Columbia Award and the Peabody Award.
Firestone and the Warlord, FRONTLINE and ProPublica’s investigation of the relationship between the iconic tire company and Liberian warlord Charles Taylor, also earned two Emmys. The investigation, from FRONTLINE producer Marcela Gaviria and co-producer Will Cohen and Maeve O’Boyle, had previously won an IRE Award and a Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award
Including this year’s wins, RAINmedia has earned over twenty Emmy Awards to date.
Rain Media has earned six of FRONTLINE‘s nine News and Documentary Emmy Award nominations for a range of documentaries exploring key domestic and international issues.
The 2015 nominations, including 57 total nods for PBS, were announced today by the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences.
“It’s an honor for our journalism to be recognized in this way,” says FRONTLINE Executive Producer Raney Aronson-Rath. “From the on-the-ground story of the Ebola outbreak, to the secret history of the government’s mass surveillance program, to the relationship between an iconic American company and a Liberian warlord, we’ve worked hard to bring ambitious and untold stories to the public.”
Rain Media has won 7 Emmy Awards to date. This year’s nominations include:
Outstanding Continuing Coverage of a Current News Story — Long Form
The Rise of ISIS
United States of Secrets
Outstanding Investigative Journalism — Long Form
Firestone and the Warlord
Outstanding Business and Economic Reporting – Long Form
To Catch a Trader
United States of Secrets
Firestone and the Warlord
This year’s winners will be announced on Sept. 28. Watch the nominated Rain Media projects on our website.
Firestone and the Warlord, a collaboration with ProPublica revealing the iconic tire company’s secret history in Liberia — has won 2015 Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Awards.
Firestone and the Warlord won in the New Media category. The multiplatform investigation in collaboration with ProPublica was led by Marcela Gaviria, T. Christian Miller, Jonathan Jones and Will Cohen.
Told as both a documentary film and an interactive text story, the Firestone and the Warlord investigation spanned seven years and unearthed 44 pounds of previously unreported court documents.
It found that Firestone agreed to pay millions of dollars to the infamous Liberian warlord Charles Taylor in exchange for being able to operate in Liberia — money that, in Taylor’s own words, provided the “financial assistance that we needed for the revolution” — and uncovered how Taylor turned the company’s plantation into a rebel base that he used to wage a bloody civil war.
“I want people to come away from the documentary and the story thinking about individual choices,” veteran FRONTLINE producer Gaviria said. “It’s very easy to say, ‘Well, corporations make these choices, because what matters is the bottom line’— but people work in corporations.”
The Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Awards, given annually by the Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice and Human Rights, recognize outstanding reporting on human rights and social justice issues. You can read a full listing of the 2015 award recipients here, and you can watch our winning films below.
Firestone and the Warlord, FRONTLINE and ProPublica‘s 2014 investigation revealing the relationship between the iconic American tire company Firestone and the infamous Liberian warlord Charles Taylor, has won an IRE Award.
“This reporting collaboration told a gripping story of how Firestone managed to continue operating during the brutal Liberian civil war, a tale informed by diplomatic cables, court documents and accounts from Americans who ran a rubber plantation as Liberia descended into chaos,” the IRE judges wrote in a statement announcing this year’s winners.
Told as both a documentary film and an interactive text story, the Firestone and the Warlord investigation spanned seven years and unearthed 44 lbs. of previously unreported court documents.
It found that Firestone agreed to pay millions of dollars to Taylor in exchange for being able to operate in Liberia — money that, in Taylor’s own words, provided the “financial assistance that we needed for the revolution” — and uncovered how Taylor turned the company’s plantation into a rebel base that he used to wage a bloody civil war.
The judges praised Firestone and the Warlord, which was honored in the “Multiplatform – Large” investigations category, as “a concise history of a disturbing episode that the public largely overlooked, and a rare window into the interrelationships of corporations that supply our consumer goods and regimes linked to crimes against humanity.”
What are the costs of doing business in a war zone?
That’s the question at the heart of Firestone and the Warlord, FRONTLINE and ProPublica‘s November 18 investigation of the secret relationship between the American tire company Firestone and the infamous Liberian warlord Charles Taylor.
The multiplatform investigation — which will include a 90-minute documentary, a major text story also being published as an e-book, and a series of original digital shorts — is a revelatory window into how Firestone conducted business during the brutal Liberian civil war, drawing on previously unreported diplomatic cables, court documents, and inside accounts from Americans who helped run the company’s rubber plantation as Liberia descended into chaos.
Reporters T. Christian Miller of ProPublica and Jonathan Jones teamed up with veteran FRONTLINE producer Marcela Gaviria to bring this story to light.
With all eyes on Liberia as the country battles the worst Ebola outbreak in recorded history, Firestone and the Warlord will shine new light on the country’s history and its civil war — a conflict that left lasting scars on the country’s infrastructure and psyche — and raise provocative questions about corporate responsibility, accountability, and the ethical ramifications of doing business in conflict zones.