IDA/ABCNews VideoSource Award
Golden Gate Award San Francisco Int’l Film Festival
Outstanding Achievement Tribeca Film Festival
On November 18, 1978, over 900 members of Peoples Temple died in the largest mass suicide/murder in history. What drew so many people across racial and class lines to the Peoples Temple? How could a diverse group of 900 people be convinced to commit suicide? What was a California congregation doing in the jungles of Guyana? And who was Jim Jones to command such loyalty that parents would murder their own children? Using never before seen archival footage and survivor interviews, Jonestown: The Life and Death of Peoples Temple™ tells the story of the people who followed Jim Jones from Indiana, to California, and finally to the remote jungles of Guyana, South America, in a misbegotten quest to build an ideal society.
Stanley Nelson, recipient of a 2002 MacArthur Fellowship, is executive producer of Firelight Films. Over the last 10 years, Nelson has garnered multiple industry awards and had five films at the Sundance Film Festival, including Wounded Knee (2009); A Place of Our Own (2004); The Murder of Emmett Till, which won a Special Jury Prize in 2003; Marcus Garvey: Look for Me in the Whirlwind (2001); and The Black Press: Soldiers Without Swords, which won the Freedom of Expression Award in 1999. He also produced and directed Sweet Honey in the Rock: Raise Your Voice and, of course, Jonestown: The Life and Death of People’s Temple.