Oscar-Nominated ‘Edge of Democracy’ Director Embarks on Coronavirus Doc Project

The Edge of Democracy Oscar Nominated Documentary
Courtesy of Francisco Van Steen Proner Ramos/Netflix

Oscar-nominated documentary director Petra Costa is turning her attention to the COVID-19 pandemic for her next project, “Dystopia.”

The Brazilian director of Netflix film “The Edge of Democracy” fired off a series of tweets today calling for the public to collaborate on the project by submitting video footage of their lives during the pandemic.

The project aims to reveal the societal problems and inequalities that the coronavirus crisis has put in sharp relief.

“We want to document this urgent moment in which the COVID-19 pandemic brings to surface our deepest structural problems and the inequality that defines our societies,” said Costa on her Twitter feed.

“We want to know what’s going on with your family, your community, your neighborhood and your city. Film horizontally what you see, think, live and feel today. We are not asking or encouraging anyone to leave the house! But, if you really have to leave, please film.”

Costa added: “We want to make a mosaic with different views of the world, to try to make sense of this pandemic.”

Those who submit video will be sent a form asking for information so Costa and her team can contact them to license the content if it ends up in the final cut.

The filmmaker has become a prominent international critic of Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro’s administration. Bolsonaro has repeatedly said the risk posed by coronavirus has been exaggerated.

Costa’s “The Edge of Democracy” — about Brazil’s turbulent recent politics — had a prominent opening night slot at last year’s Sundance Film Festival, and was also a candidate for an Academy Award in the documentary feature category this year. It is distributed globally by Netflix.

Her previous documentaries include “Olmo & the Seagull” and “Elena.”