With Amy a favorite to pick up this year’s best documentary Oscar and two further high-profile features — Maradona and an untitled Oasis doc — among the hot titles at Berlin’s EFM, filmmakers Asif Kapadia and James Gay-Rees are expanding their output. But this time they’re moving away from iconic figures and their traditional feature-length format.
“We’re tending to look at more long-form options now,” Gay-Rees tells The Hollywood Reporter. “We want to do more documentary series, more for the platforms in the States, the Netflixes and the Amazons…they’re the people we’re talking to a bit more now.”
One six-hour project, which Gay-Rees says could either air in six hour-long or four 90-minute episodes, is set to go into production during the first half of this year, with Kapadia, who directed Amy and is set to direct Maradona, helming the pilot episode.
The story itself will be “based around a seminal year,” says Gay-Rees, although he wouldn’t reveal which one. “We have another one that again, we’re just developing now. That’ll be hopefully be another four- to six-hour documentary series.”
But there’s one iconic figure Gay-Rees says he would “drop everything” for to make a documentary about: David Bowie.
“We would kill to make that film. We would do anything to make that film,” he says. “If his estate is listening, please give us a call…but it’s far too soon. But if there was ever a conversation to be had around it….”
A Bowie doc, Gay-Rees claims, might need a longer-form version. “There’s so much great material to work with,” he says. “Trying to do that in 90 minutes would be tricky.”