Published on Jun 13, 2014
As screened for US Congress on Capitol Hill in 2011, and the NSW & The Australian Federal Parliament in 2012.
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Vice takes an unprecedented look into the shadowy industry of Private Military Companies. For the past two decades these private companies, like Black Water, Aegis and G4S have silently consumed military operations around the world, doing everything from back end logistics, protection of government VIP’s and diplomats to actual combat duties. In this documentary we explore the origins of this industry, their rise in the war on terror and their future operations around the world.
Lords of the Gourd: The Pursuit of Excellence
Journey with the extreme gardeners who raise monster pumpkins and compete at one of horticulture’s top events: the annual Cooperstown weigh off.
Around the world, obesity levels are rising. More people are now overweight than undernourished. Two thirds of British adults are overweight and one in four of us is classified as obese. In the first of this three-part series, Jacques Peretti traces those responsible for revolutionising our eating habits, to find out how decisions made in America 40 years ago influence the way we eat now.
Peretti travels to America to investigate the story of high-fructose corn syrup. The sweetener was championed in the US in the 1970s by Richard Nixon’s agriculture secretary Earl Butz to make use of the excess corn grown by farmers. Cheaper and sweeter than sugar, it soon found its way into almost all processed foods and soft drinks. HFCS is not only sweeter than sugar, it also interferes with leptin, the hormone that controls appetite, so once you start eating or drinking it, you don’t know when to stop.
Endocrinologist Robert Lustig was one of the first to recognise the dangers of HFCS but his findings were discredited at the time. Meanwhile a US Congress report blamed fat, not sugar, for the disturbing rise in cardio-vascular disease and the food industry responded with ranges of ‘low fat’, ‘heart healthy’ products in which the fat was removed – but the substitute was yet more sugar.
Meanwhile, in 1970s Britain, food manufacturers used advertising campaigns to promote the idea of snacking between meals. Outside the home, fast food chains offered clean, bright premises with tempting burgers cooked and served with a very un-British zeal and efficiency. Twenty years after the arrival of McDonalds, the number of fast food outlets in Britain had quadrupled.
The world might not be as bad as you might believe!
Don’t Panic – is a one-hour long documentary produced by Wingspan Productions and broadcasted on BBC on the 7th of November 2013.
The visualizations are based on original graphics and stories by Gapminder and the underlaying data-sources are listed here.
Hans’s — “All time favorite graph”, is an animating bubble chart which you can interact with online here and download offline here.
Hans presents some results from our UK Ignorance Survey described here.
Director & Producer; Dan Hillman, Executive Producer: Archie Baron. ©Wingspan Productions for BBC, 2013.
A DVD version of this film is available to order from Wingspan Productions.
The number of people made homeless by private landlords has tripled in the last five years. It’s now the single biggest cause of homelessness in England. Reporter Richard Bilton meets the homeless families forced out by private landlords and asks whether the government’s increasing reliance on the private rental sector is placing the vulnerable at risk.
Consuming Kids throws desperately needed light on the practices of a relentless multi-billion dollar marketing machine that now sells kids and their parents everything from junk food and violent video games to bogus educational products and the family car. Drawing on the insights of health care professionals, children’s advocates, and industry insiders, the film focuses on the explosive growth of child marketing in the wake of deregulation, showing how youth marketers have used the latest advances in psychology, anthropology, and neuroscience to transform American children into one of the most powerful and profitable consumer demographics in the world. Consuming Kids pushes back against the wholesale commercialization of childhood, raising urgent questions about the ethics of children’s marketing and its impact on the health and well-being of kids.
– Written by The Media Education Foundation
A father and son go on a journey to discover the mysterious circumstances of a grandfather’s tragic death in rural town of Goochland, Virginia. Their discoveries reveal more than just the truth, as they uncover what it means to be a fortunate son.
On The Lake: Life and Love in a Distant Place tells the true story of the tuberculosis epidemic in America in the 1900s and globally today through the lives of those that were infected and who died — but also of those who survived. More than scientific facts and figures, On The Lake touches that rare emotional cord of what life was like for millions of people infected with TB, while providing a glimpse into human nature when faced with a large-scale epidemic.
At the height of the worst wildfire season in a decade, Kate Humble and Simon Reeve travel to New South Wales, Australia to discover how the 70,000-strong Rural Firefighting Service contend with as many as 100 fires a day.
Kate visits their HQ in Sydney to investigate the sophisticated rapid response system designed to kick into action the second a fire is reported, while Simon joins a crew racing to stamp out a grass fire threatening a nearby town and joins a team trekking through remote bushland to extinguish spot fires started by lightning.
In this first programme of two, Simon and Kate explore why wildfires in Australia are so frequent and hard to control, unlocking the surprising secrets of fire behaviour with leading scientists working to help those on the frontline.