FilmRise, CANAL+ Docs team up on new crime doc | Deals | News | Rapid TV News
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Television studio and streaming network FilmRise and French linear and digital documentary channel Canal+ Docs have come together for Missing From Fire Trail Road, the latest documentary from award-winning director Sabrina Van Tassel.
FilmRise Fire Trail Road 23May2023
The film delves into the case of Mary Ellen Johnson-Davis, a Native-American woman who disappeared in 2020 from a small and peaceful community near Seattle, Washington, and exposes how hundreds of indigenous women continue to go missing in the US, perpetuating transgenerational trauma on Indian reservations.

The case highlights a harsh and shameful truth: Native-American women go missing at a higher rate than any other population in the US. Most of these crimes go unsolved and are committed by non-natives. Complex tribal jurisdictional issues, lack of full reporting and accounting of missing indigenous people, have created legal loopholes on Indian reservations.

Van Tassel is lauded for her documentaries focusing on social justice and political matters. Her 2020 feature The State of Texas vs Melissa created a major media stir in the US sparked by an effective grassroots campaign with political, social and celebrity support which went viral around the world leading to numerous petitions for a down to the wire stay of execution for Melissa Luccio, who was to be the first Hispanic woman executed in Texas.

FilmRise will have worldwide distribution rights to the film, all media, excluding France and French speaking territories overseas and in Africa, which Canal+ Docs will hold.

Commenting on the deal, Max Einhorn, SVP, acquisitions & co-productions at FilmRise said: “Sabrina is a brilliant filmmaker whose documentaries bring awareness to topics and subjects that are often overlooked but are no less important. We are honoured to be working with Sabrina on her follow-up to State of Texas vs. Melissa, and we couldn’t be more thrilled to be collaborating with Canal+. The atrocities committed against indigenous communities must become a mainstream issue so we can bring about change.”

Christine Cauquelin, group director of documentaries for Canal+ added: “After acquiring The State of Texas vs Melissa, we supported Sabrina’s incredible impact campaign which helped save Melissa Lucio’s life. Today, we are thrilled to be on board of with her new film. Thousands of Native American women go missing in the US in utter indifference and it is time this urgent matter be brought to the table. We are proud to accompany Sabrina, along with FilmRise, on this important documentary.”