Journalist and Director Victor Fraga talks about his new project, an update on 1993’s essential Beyond Citizen Kane which has a crowdfunding campaign to make it happen.
In Brazil, there’s a popular saying: “if TV Globo didn’t show it, it never happened”. This illustrates how much power the largest media conglomerate has over the country. Well aware of its grip over the politics and the mind Brazilians, TV Globo has consistently abused of its leading position. The TV, which is a child of the military dictatorship that ruled Brazil between 1964 and 1985, has played in instrumental role in the parliamentary coup d’état of 2016 and in the recent political arrest of Lula. It invited leading military leaders live on TV in order to blackmail the country and suggest that yet another military coup d’état could take place if Lula wasn’t arrested – regardless of the fact that there no evidence against him.
Now the international community has joined efforts in order to demonstrate solidarity with Brazilian democracy. French leftwing leader Melenchon, Argentinean Nobel Peace Prize winner Perez Esquivel e many British politicians (including Ken Livingstone, Chris Williamson and Diane Abbot) have criticised the extremely reactionary developments in Brazil. But none of this will be sufficient, unless the world understands the role that TV Globo and the large media have played in destroying Brazilian democracy.
That’s why two Brazilian journalists and filmmakers decided to do something about it, by giving continuity to a British documentary from 1993.
Globo has more power than Citizen Kane
In 1993 Channel 4 of Britain produced the emblematic documentary Brazil Beyond Citizen Kane, which denounced the anti-democratic and manipulative tactics of TV Globo, the largest television and media conglomerate of Brazil.
Now two Brazilian journalists based in London, Victor Fraga and Valnei Nunes, decided to give continuity to the 1993 movie, establishing a dialogue between the past and the present. The new film, which will be called THE COUP D’ÉTAT FACTORY will reveal that TV Globo has hardly changed throughout the decades, retaining its highly biased and unethical journalistic practices, aligned with the interests of large capitalists.
In 2013, TV Globo apologised in its main news show Jornal Nacional for its support of the 1964 coup d’état. Despite the mitigation, TV Globo helped to stage yet another coup d’état, the illegal impeachment of president Dilma Rousseff in May 2016. Despite a thin legal veneer, Dilma’s was not in line with the Brazilian constitution and was instead a thoroughly illegitimate process, since Dilma had not committed any crime or misdemeanour.
TV Globo’s support for the 2016 coup was expressed through the unrelenting demonisation of the Brazilian Workers’ Party (Dilma’s party) in its news reporting, and the almost complete neglect of the high crimes and misdemeanours carried out by the right-wing parties, such as PSDB. Globo has become a staunch ally of the illegitimate president Michel Temer.
The new film
The documentary THE COUP D’ÉTAT FACTORY will demonstrate that Globo’s journalism is extremely biased and tendentious. Pro-impeachment demonstrations received extensive coverage, while the pro-Dilma protests were distorted or simply neglected. Globo manipulation tactics include highly questionable practices such as audio doctoring (for example, the booing of Temer during the Olympics was removed) and even censorship (costumes of the Samba school Tuiuti mocking the coup and the coup mongers were cut out of Globo’s Carnival coverage).
To boot, Globo plays an instrumental role in the lawfare (judicial persecution) of former president Lula, seeking to prevent him from running for office in 2018 (in what is described as “the second part” of the coup staged in 2016). Meanwhile, the major setbacks of the Temer extreme neo-liberal agenda (such as pension reform and the erosion of worker’s rights) are bluntly ignored by the news network.
The new film will be an international denunciation tool and also a historical register, so that history doesn’t repeat itself in yet another 25 years.
And what can YOU do?
The new film is an independent project not aligned with corporate interests. In order for it to happen, you must help. Please visit the crowdfunding site below and make a contribution. Every little counts!