CNN Exclusive: Plastic Island
December 1st, 2016
11:41 AM ET

CNN Exclusive: Plastic Island

CNN presents Plastic Island, an exclusive digital documentary exploring the damage plastic is doing to our oceans – and potentially to our health.

CNN got exclusive access to Midway Atoll in the north Pacific Ocean, where the plastic we throw away each day washes up on the beach, works its way into the ocean and potentially ends up in our food. This Pacific island is on the frontline of the world's fight against discarded plastic and its damage to the environment.

From the frontline, CNN’s Nick Paton Walsh, Ingrid Formanek, Jackson Loo and Mark Phillips take a closer look at the toll our disposable culture is taking on the wildlife there – and the health implications for the rest of the world.

This exclusive includes a mini-documentary, a personal essay from CNN correspondent Nick Paton Walsh, an animated video explaining microplastics and graphics illustrating the amount of plastic in the ocean and the life cycle of a toothbrush.

Watch the special report on plastic polluting the oceans, and what we can do to stop it at cnn.com/plasticisland

Digital Studios Rolls Out 'Future of Adventure’ Series
The 'Exosuit," which allows deep-sea divers to propel through the ocean.
March 14th, 2016
10:49 AM ET

Digital Studios Rolls Out 'Future of Adventure’ Series

CNN Digital Studios has launched six new videos in their Future of Adventure series, which begin rolling out today.  The series focuses on how people are experiencing adventure in new ways because of technological innovation and ingenious designs that allow them to reach new heights in exploration. 

Today’s feature focuses on the man who created a robotic suit that allows deep-sea divers to propel through the ocean using water jets.  Other videos will focus on inventions in space travel, Earth-friendly wetsuits and airbags.   

Available now at CNN.com/adventure, the series will publish in its entirety on CNNgo in April.  Follow CNN’s best video at @CNNVideo.

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CNN Digital Studios Premieres Film Series on ‘Giving Birth in America’
Christy Turlington Burns is the founder of Every Mother Counts, a non-profit organization dedicated to making pregnancy and childbirth safe
December 9th, 2015
10:00 AM ET

CNN Digital Studios Premieres Film Series on ‘Giving Birth in America’

Today CNN announced that they are rolling out  ‘Giving Birth in America,’ a three-part film series executive-produced by global maternal health advocate and founder of Every Mother Counts, Christy Turlington Burns.  The series examines some of the contributing factors that have made the U.S. the only industrialized country with a consistently rising maternal mortality rate.  The films will publish across CNN’s digital platforms today.

Available at www.cnn.com/mothers, each short film follows pregnant women and their healthcare providers in Florida, Montana and New York in the days leading up to delivery. Together, they navigate challenges of race, poverty, chronic illness, overuse of medical interventions and other inequalities that impact maternal health outcomes in America. 

“We are thrilled that CNN recognizes the urgency of this issue and grateful for the opportunity to reach new audiences and inspire others to take action through their platform,” said Turlington Burns. “Most maternal deaths in the U.S. are preventable. Together, we can make pregnancy and childbirth safe for every mother, everywhere.”

FULL POST

December 4th, 2015
11:17 AM ET

BLACKFACE Streams Across CNN’s Digital Platforms

Academy® Award-winning filmmaker Roger Ross Williams’s new provocative short explores racially-charged Christmas tradition

Academy® Award-winning filmmaker, Roger Ross Williams, takes viewers with him on a provocative exploration of the origins of the curious Christmastime custom of dressing up in blackface, for his latest documentary short film, also titled BLACKFACE, co-produced by CNN Films and CNN Digital Studios, and now streaming across CNN’s digital platforms, the network announced today. BLACKFACE makes its global premiere across CNN’s digital and mobile platforms.

In Holland, “a country of tolerance, forward-thinking, bikes, and Dutch apple pie,” as Williams describes in his narration, dressing up as Zwarte Piet, is as Dutch as “tulips or Gouda cheese.” Each December, as in the United States and many countries around the world, revelers mark the holiday season by dressing up as Santa Claus (“Sinterklaas”). In the Netherlands though, Santa is frequently depicted with a mischievous companion, “Zwarte Piet,” or “Black Pete,” a childlike African caricature dressed in fancy clothes with ruby-red lips, who is sometimes Santa’s helper, sometimes an angry slave that works for Sinterklaas.

Williams discovers that Black Pete is a fiercely – and controversially-defended tradition, but it’s also a tradition that many people see as hostile and offensive – an odd cultural juxtaposition for a society that is globally-known for its avant-garde cultural inclusiveness. Williams speaks with art and cultural historians who outline the history of the tradition – and the political challenges – even extending to the Prime Minister’s defense of the tradition – that are associated with pointing out the hurtful images that remind many of slavery. Along the way, Williams also explores the complicated relationship of the Dutch to their colonial history and the global slave trade.

Williams also speaks with Black Pete protestors, and explores how even today, Dutch children are still learning to practice a custom that seems of a bygone era.

BLACKFACE runs approximately 15 minutes and is available via CNN.com, CNNgo, and across CNN’s mobile properties. For a preview of BLACKFACE, please visit http://cnn.it/1XlouOW. The film is presented across CNN’s digital platforms exclusively by Volkswagen.

CNN’s fall doc short series launched in November with ALL-AMERICAN FAMILY, directed by award-winning filmmaker Andrew Jenks, and produced and directed by Jenks and Daniel Zinn through Andrew Jenks Entertainment. FULL POST

ALL-AMERICAN FAMILY Launches Fall Doc Short Series Across CNN’s Digital Platforms
November 25th, 2015
09:47 AM ET

ALL-AMERICAN FAMILY Launches Fall Doc Short Series Across CNN’s Digital Platforms

Award-winning filmmaker Andrew Jenks’s doc short explores family, high school football, and Deaf culture

In Pleasanton, Ca., brothers Zane and Jax Pedersen are famous for leading their high school football team to glory. Like many brothers, they are rivals and best friends – their family and school is also largely Deaf. Four generations of Pedersens have played football at the California School for the Deaf, teaching visitors that they are fierce competitors on the field – and fiercely proud of their Deaf culture. ALL-AMERICAN FAMILY, directed by award-winning filmmaker Andrew Jenks, and produced by Jenks and Daniel Zinn through Andrew Jenks Entertainment, and co-produced by CNN Films and CNN Digital Studios, is streaming across CNN’s digital platforms now, kicking off a new series of digital documentary short films.

ALL-AMERICAN FAMILY, which runs approximately 12 minutes, shows the exuberance and comradery of football in a suburban town, the love of a tight-knit family, proud of its young generation, and the community that comes with being Deaf. Jenks describes his passion quest in pursuing this film as having begun when he was a teenager and lived not far from a school for the Deaf.

“I would pass a school for the Deaf enroute to the local mall and thought if I could ever make movies, I would want to make one that captured that world. I thought a good entry point would be an aspect of life that most people can relate to, or find accessible. A high school football team came to mind; sort of like my own version of Friday Night Lights.” said Jenks. “I feel so lucky to have met the Pedersen family and to have had the opportunity to tell a little slice of their extraordinary family story.”

ALL-AMERICAN FAMILY premiered at New York’s Tribeca Film Festival and won the audience award for best short film at the 2015 Hamptons International Film Festival. The film is presented across CNN’s digital platforms exclusively by Volkswagen. The film will be available via CNN.com and across CNN’s mobile properties. For a preview of the film, please visit www.CNN.com/shortfilms.

In future weeks, following the premiere of ALL-AMERICAN FAMILY, CNN’s digital film series will include films by award-winning filmmakers Sharon Liese and Roger Ross Williams.

CNN’s inaugural series of short films launched in March and currently includes the films UBAH!, about the uncommon life of Somalian supermodel and philanthropist Ubah Hassan, directed by Joe Berlinger; RAISING RYLAND, a journey inside the transgender experience as lived by a six-year-old boy, directed by Sarah Feeley; and THE 414S: THE ORIGINAL TEENAGE HACKERS, about a small, talented group of Milwaukee teens who hacked into dozens of prominent computer systems – including the Los Alamos National Laboratory – during the early days of the Internet, directed by Michael T. Vollmann.

About CNN Films

CNN Films produces and acquires documentary feature and short films for theatrical and festival exhibition and distribution across CNN’s multiple platforms.  Amy Entelis, evp of talent and content development, and Courtney Sexton, senior director for program development, oversee the strategy for CNN Films. For more information about CNN Films, please visit www.CNN.com/CNNFilms, www.CNN.com/shortfilms, and follow @CNNFilms via Twitter.

About CNN

CNN Worldwide is a portfolio of two dozen news and information services across cable, satellite, radio, wireless devices and the Internet in more than 200 countries and territories worldwide. Domestically, CNN reaches more individuals on television, the web and mobile devices than any other cable TV news organization in the United States; internationally, CNN is the most widely distributed news channel reaching more than 271 million households abroad; and CNN Digital is a top network for online news, mobile news and social media. Additionally, CNN Newsource is the world’s most extensively utilized news service partnering with hundreds of local and international news organizations around the world. CNN is division of Turner Broadcasting System, Inc., a Time Warner Company.

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CNN Rolls Out New Pioneers Series
This Robo Chimp could be the best chance for an unmanned moon mission.
October 7th, 2015
09:53 AM ET

CNN Rolls Out New Pioneers Series

Pioneers is a new Digital Studios series that rolls out today across CNN’s digital platforms.  This seven-week series will include original video reporting, articles and photo galleries about the people who are on the cutting edge of science, technology and medicine – making the unimaginable possible and coming up with solutions to impossible problems.  Today’s story focuses on Organoids, lab-grown mini organs that scientists develop from skin cells in order to fight disease without risking human life.

Other topics in the series will include carbon sequestration, making fusion a reality and mining asteroids to create rocket fuel.

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Topics: CNN Digital • Digital Studios • Video
May 15th, 2015
09:30 AM ET

CNN Digital Studios Presents: New Explorers

From the Himalayas to the Caribbean, CNN Digital Studios' latest series introduces the next wave of explorers tackling challenges on land, sea and air. FULL POST


Topics: Digital Studios
May 5th, 2015
12:00 PM ET

CNN Politics Launches ‘Yankee Doodle’ with Stephen Collinson

Yankee Doodle ft Stephen Collinson

CNN’s Stephen Collinson (@StCollinson) journeyed across the pond to his native United Kingdom to launch CNN Politics latest original video series – Yankee Doodle.

In the debut episode, Collinson takes Americans into the heart of the pending UK election – including the race tracks, the debate hall and of course the pubs – to explain why the UK election matters how it’s different from what the United States will experience in the months ahead.

Collinson, a seasoned political reporter who’s filed from more than 50 countries, will give users a fun and easy to understand guide through a series of fascinating and complex political races and issues in his new series.

Don’t miss the adventures, antics and explainers from Collinson’s series, produced in partnership by CNN Politics and CNN Digital Studios.

Follow @CNNPolitics and @StCollinson on Twitter for more.

Explore CNN Politics' Yankee Doodle featuring Stephen Collinson


Topics: CNN Politics • Digital • Digital Studios
CNN Films and CNN Digital Studios Pick Up 'THE GNOMIST' at Tribeca Film Festival
April 28th, 2015
01:23 PM ET

CNN Films and CNN Digital Studios Pick Up 'THE GNOMIST' at Tribeca Film Festival

Director/Producer Sharon Liese’s Film to Stream Across CNN Digital Platforms During Fall Short Film Series

Fresh from its world premiere at New York’s Tribeca Film Festival, award-winning filmmaker Sharon Liese’s short film, THE GNOMIST, produced by Herizon Productions and Cynthia Wade, has been acquired by CNN Films and CNN Digital Studios, it was announced today.

“It is a huge honor to have my work selected by such a distinguished network,” says Liese. “I am thrilled that THE GNOMIST and its message will have this expansive reach.”

“We are delighted to be able to bring Sharon’s beautifully-crafted, novel true story to a wide audience via CNN’s robust digital platforms. On the heels of the success of our first series of digital shorts, we are extremely pleased that THE GNOMIST will become part of our fall series of extraordinary short-form films for CNN,” said Courtney Sexton, senior director for program development for CNN Worldwide.

THE GNOMIST is the true story of the mysterious appearance of fairy dwellings in a suburban Kansas forest and the psychic healing power of the magical experience shared by three former strangers.

“THE GNOMIST is an incredible story, beautifully told. It’s the perfect addition to CNN Digital’s continued push into long-form narrative storytelling,” said Chris Berend, vice president of video content development for CNN/U.S.

The acquisition of THE GNOMIST was negotiated by Stacey Wolf, vice president of business affairs, and Sexton, on behalf of CNN. THE GNOMIST will premiere internationally at Hot Docs Film Festival in Toronto (April 29) and continue to screen at other U.S. film festivals this spring. For more information on screenings, please visit www.thegnomistfilm.com. The film is expected to premiere on CNN’s digital platforms sometime in the fall.

Additional films for the fall series will include short films from Andrew Jenks (MTV’s World of Jenks) and Roger Ross Williams (GOD LOVES UGANDA).

CNN’s inaugural series of short films launched in March and includes the films UBAH!, about the uncommon life of Somalian supermodel and philanthropist Ubah Hassan, directed by Joe Berlinger; RAISING RYLAND, a journey inside the transgender experience as lived by a six-year-old boy, directed by Sarah Feeley; and THE 414S: THE ORIGINAL TEENAGE HACKERS, about a small, talented group of Milwaukee teens who hacked into dozens of prominent computer systems – including the Los Alamos National Laboratory – during the early days of the Internet, directed by Michael T. Vollmann. All three of these exceptional short films are now available via www.CNN.com/shortfilms.

About CNN Films

CNN Films produces and acquires documentary feature and short films for theatrical and festival exhibition and distribution across CNN’s multiple platforms.  Amy Entelis, svp of talent and content development, Vinnie Malhotra, svp of development and acquisitions, and Courtney Sexton, senior director for program development, oversee the strategy for CNN Films. For more information about CNN Films, please visit www.CNN.com/CNNFilms, www.CNN.com/shortfilms, and follow @CNNFilms via Twitter.

About CNN

CNN Worldwide is a portfolio of two dozen news and information services across cable, satellite, radio, wireless devices and the Internet in more than 200 countries and territories worldwide. Domestically, CNN reaches more individuals on television, the web and mobile devices than any other cable TV news organization in the United States; internationally, CNN is the most widely distributed news channel reaching more than 271 million households abroad; and CNN Digital is a top network for online news, mobile news and social media. Additionally, CNN Newsource is the world’s most extensively utilized news service partnering with hundreds of local and international news organizations around the world. CNN is division of Turner Broadcasting System, Inc., a Time Warner Company.

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March 11th, 2015
12:23 PM ET

CNN Films and CNN Digital Studios team to launch short docs series beginning today with 'The 414s'

At the 2015 Sundance Film Festival, CNN announced a new series of short films representing a collaboration between CNN Films and CNN Digital Studios.  These original short films directed by established and rising filmmakers will premiere exclusively across CNN’s digital platforms.  The first series of films begins today, March 11, with the 12-minute film, THE 414s: The Original Teenage Hackers, which may be viewed now via www.CNN.com, CNN’s mobile properties (including CNNgo) and CNN’s social footprint.  No authentication is required to view the film.

Whether called “snooping,” “raiding,” or “hacking” – what began as surreptitious activity for fun, eventually grew more deliberate when, in 1983, Milwaukee teenagers Neal Patrick, Gerald Wondra, and Timothy Winslow began experimenting with computer networking using a relatively new technology: personal computers.  The boys called themselves “the 414s,” an homage to the telephone area code associated with their hometown. FULL POST

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