Available until June 24 - Includes Q&A

No Longer Available

Film Info
Country Listing:Canada
South Africa
Premiere Status:Canadian Premiere
Festival Info
Festival Year:2020
Accessibility:Partial Subtitles
Program Category:Special Presentations
Film Subjects:Capitalism & Big Business
Crime & Intrigue
Journalism & the Media
Politics & Political Intrigue
Cast/Crew Info
Director(s):Richard Poplak
Diana Neille
Producer(s):Bob Moore
Neil Brandt
Executive Producer(s):Mila Aung-Thwin
Daniel Cross
Thandi Davids
Editor(s):Ryan Mullins
Writer(s):Richard Poplak
Diana Neille
Cinematography:Glauco Bermudez
Mark Ó Fearghaíl
Composer:Florencia Di Concilio
Sound:Benoît Dame
Catherine Van Der Donckt


Closed Captions Icon  Streaming with closed captions

As the information age transforms our societies and political arenas, democracies are being tested in a post-truth era. Advertising agencies, originally developed to help capitalist industries capture market share, have begun to apply their finely tuned propaganda machine to elections. British firm Bell Pottinger was one of the world’s most prominent public relations and reputation management agencies. Their keen ability to develop and disseminate personal branding for disgraced politicians, dictators and companies was highly sought after by the rich and powerful. They seemed unstoppable, until one of their campaigns incited a flashpoint of racial tensions in South Africa and became an unmitigated disaster for these veteran spin doctors. Archival material provides a factual background to interviews with the firm’s founder, Lord Tim Bell, and those who worked with, for and against him. This riveting examination of the emergence of weaponized communication is both a historical account and dark warning. Alexander Rogalski

This film includes a pre-recorded Q&A.

Watch now on CBC Gem

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Additional Information

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