Laura Poitras, director of the Oscar-winning CITIZENFOUR, has released a new trailer for her upcoming WikiLeaks documentary, Risk. The film follows WikiLeaks’ controversial founder and editor-in-chief Julian Assange over a six-year period.
Poitras gained “unprecedented access” to Assange for this documentary, filming him during the Arab Spring in 2010 to his retreat into London’s Ecuadorian Embassy where he currently resides.
When Poitras screened the first cut of the film at the Cannes Film Festival in 2016, critics noted the relative absence of the negative allegations levelled against Assange, including unresolved rape charges.
“These allegations clearly aren’t the director’s concern – she appears to largely agree with WikiLeaks editor Sarah Harrison’s assessment that they serve to distract the public from the organisation’s work,” we said in our first-look review.
However, the film’s tone seems to have since changed, with Poitras having reframed the narrative. Since last May Assange has been involved in the leaking of Hillary Clinton’s emails during the 2016 US presidential election campaign, and been accused of having links with Russian president Vladimir Putin.
In this new trailer, we hear Poitras question her own position on Assange. “This is not the film I thought I was making,” she says. “I thought I could ignore the contradictions, I thought they were not part of the story. I was wrong. They are becoming the story.”
Poitras’ last film was the 2014 documentary CITIZENFOUR, which followed the government employee turned whistleblower Edward Snowden as the NSA spying scandal broke.
Risk will air on Showtime in the US before being made available to stream online.
Published 10 Apr 2017
Laura Poitras’ real-life spy thriller shows how and why Edward Snowden stepped up to blow the whistle on government spying.
By Fred Wagner
Oliver Stone’s Snowden will look to realistically show the actions of the NSA and other government agencies.