Astonishing… Dropping us into a perfect storm of avarice, this cool and incisive snapshot of global capitalism at work is as remarkable for its access as for its refusal to judge.” — Jeannette Catsoulis, The New York Times
Over five years, director Rachel Boynton and her cinematographer film the quest for oil in Ghana by Dallas-based Kosmos. The company develops the country’s first commercial oil field, yet its success is quickly compromised by political intrigue and accusations of corruption. As Ghanaians wait to reap the benefits of oil, the filmmakers discover violent resistance down the coast in the Niger Delta, where poor Nigerians have yet to prosper from decades-old oil fields. Big Men, executive produced by Brad Pitt, provides an unprecedented inside look at the global deal making and dark underside of energy development — a contest for money and power that is reshaping the world. Official Selection of the 2013 Tribeca Film Festival.
After the broadcast, visit the Big Men companion siteto watch the full film online for free for a limited time following the broadcast (starting August 26, 2014). Learn from the filmmaker in an extended video interview, find out what’s happened since the cameras stopped rolling and download a discussion guide and other viewing resources.
Then, on Tuesday, August 25, from 1-2 PM ET (10-11 AM PT), join Big Men filmmaker Rachel Boynton, former chief executive of Kosmos Jim Musselman and Ian Gary, Senior Policy Manager of Extractive Industries at Oxfam America, for a live video chat with viewers on POV’s Google+ page. RSVP and submit your questions ahead of time.
Share your thoughts and ask questions by using the hashtag #bigmen.
“Big Men is a movie about that world and about the system in which we all live,” says Boynton in a filmmaker’s statement. “Personal profit is the great motivator. We all want to become bigger than we are, to make more money and to achieve greater renown. And everyone is concerned with looking after his own people — his own family, friends, tribe, company, shareholders. The major difference is in who each of us considers ‘his own’ to be. For me, the safeguard against divisive self-interest lies not in denying that we’re all looking out for ourselves, but in recognizing and valuing what connects us.”
Big Men premieres Monday, August 25, 2014, at 10 PM on PBS stations. (Check local listings.)