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The Boston Globe, Open Road Films, Participant Media, First Look Media Unveil Spotlight Investigative Journalism Fellowship

Inspired by the Globe’s Spotlight Team as Portrayed in the Feature Film ‘Spotlight,’ $100,000 Offered to Fund Investigative Journalism for The Boston Globe


BOSTON (December 9, 2015) – The Boston Globe today announced the Spotlight Investigative Journalism Fellowship aimed at supporting the work of investigative journalists.  Funded by Participant Media and Open Road Films with support from First Look Media, a $100,000 fellowship will be awarded to an individual or team of journalists to provide resources and support to pursue an in-depth investigative story with the opportunity to publish it in The Boston Globe.


The creation of the fellowship is inspired by The Boston Globe Spotlight Team’s Pulitzer Prize-winning coverage of sexual abuse in the Catholic Church as portrayed in the critically acclaimed feature film Spotlight.  


“The Boston Globe has an unwavering commitment to produce high-impact investigative stories that pierce secrecy and shine a light on issues, individuals, and institutions to expose the truth,” said Brian McGrory, Boston Globe editor. “Whether it is the Spotlight Team’s investigation of the Catholic Church in 2002; its relentless reporting of the criminal dealings of James ‘Whitey’ Bulger and his ties to federal law enforcement; or its most recent report on hospitals where doctors are running two surgeries at once, accountability reporting is an integral part of The Boston Globe’s daily coverage.”

“Without the brave and tenacious work of the reporters on the Spotlight Team, the true scope of the story might never have been told,” said Tom Ortenberg, CEO of Open Road Films. “Pursuing a story to its end takes time and resources not often available to journalists; the fellowship will enable another important story and critical issue to reach citizens.”

“What Spotlight does so beautifully is show the critical role that journalists play in helping society hold institutions accountable for their actions,” said Jonathan King, EVP of Narrative Films at Participant Media. “We’re proud to honor the work of the Spotlight Team and support the efforts of investigative journalism through the fellowship.”

“Good storytelling can be engaging and provocative but its real power is ignited when a unique perspective on an issue inspires people to create change,” said Michael Bloom, president of First Look Media. “We are deeply committed to supporting fearless investigative journalism at First Look Media through The Intercept, and are thrilled to support the Spotlight Team and the winners through this fellowship.”

The Spotlight Investigative Journalism Fellowship is available to journalists with a substantive body of work published in major media outlets. Story submissions should have a U.S. domestic focus and be of public interest. Consideration will be given for proposals that investigate serious wrongdoing and abuse of power in the public or private sectors. The program will be driven by The Boston Globe with the fellow(s) chosen by a committee composed of current and former Boston Globe reporters, editors, and others, including editor in chief of First Look Media’s The Intercept. As part of the fellowship, the fellow(s) will collaborate with an investigative journalist from The Boston Globe’s Spotlight Team. They will also receive support and guidance from the Globe’s editorial team as well as the First Look Media team.

Submissions are open starting today and will be accepted through February 29, 2016 at www.spotlightfellowship.com. The fellow will be announced in the summer of 2016.  

Spotlight, starring Michael Keaton, Mark Ruffalo, Rachel McAdams, Liev Schreiber, John Slattery, Stanley Tucci, Brian d’Arcy James, and Billy Crudup, tells the riveting true story of the Pulitzer Prize-winning Boston Globe investigation that would rock the city and cause a crisis in one of the world’s oldest and most trusted institutions. When the newspaper’s tenacious “Spotlight” team of reporters delves into allegations of abuse in the Catholic Church, its year-long investigation uncovers a decades-long cover-up at the highest levels of Boston’s Catholic archdiocese, touching off a wave of revelations around the world. Directed by Academy Award-nominee Tom McCarthy, Spotlight is a tense investigative thriller, tracing the steps to one of the biggest crime stories in modern times.

About The Boston Globe

The Boston Globe is New England’s foremost regional news source dedicated to providing in-depth coverage in breaking news, sports, business, lifestyle, and arts. With a mission to provide truth and accountability, both in print and on BostonGlobe.com, the Globe is the epitome of premium journalism, winning 24 Pulitzer Prizes over the past 50 years.


About Open Road Films

Open Road Films is a leading, independent, theatrical motion picture company, releasing a diverse slate of star-driven films which has included multiple #1 releases. It was founded in 2011 by AMC Entertainment Inc. (AMC) and Regal Entertainment Group (Regal), the two largest theatrical exhibition companies in the United States. Open Road and its lenders recently extended the company’s $100,000,000 credit facility through 2018.

Current and past releases include: Nightcrawler, starring Jake Gyllenhaal, which took the #1 spot at the box-office during its opening week and received an Oscar® nomination for Best Original Screenplay, along with a Golden Globe nomination – it was named one of the best films of 2014 by the AFI and National Board of Review and top critics nationwide; the hit film Chef, written by, directed by and starring Jon Favreau along with Sofia Vergara, Scarlett Johansson, John Leguizamo, Bobby Cannavale, Oliver Platt, Dustin Hoffman and Robert Downey, Jr.; The Nut Job, which opened to over $25 million at the box office as the highest ever opening for an independent animated film; The Grey, directed by Joe Carnahan and starring Liam Neeson, which opened #1 at the box office; End Of Watch, directed by David Ayer and starring Jake Gyllenhaal and Michael Peña, which opened #1 at the box office; Rosewater, written and directed by Jon Stewart; A Haunted House starring Marlon Wayans; and Side Effects, directed by Steven Soderbergh and starring Rooney Mara, Jude Law, Catherine Zeta-Jones and Channing Tatum.

Upcoming releases include: Dope (6/19/15), a critical hit and audience favorite comedy out of the Sundance Film Festival and Cannes Film Festival, written and directed by Rick Famuyiwa; Triple Nine, a thriller directed by John Hillcoat starring Chiwetel Ejiofor, Casey Affleck, Anthony Mackie, Woody Harrelson, Aaron Paul, Kate Winslet, Gal Gadot, Norman Reedus, Teresa Palmer and Clifton Collins, Jr. (9/11/15); Rock The Kasbah (10/23/2015), starring Bill Murray along with Bruce Willis, Kate Hudson, Zooey Deschanel, Danny McBride and Scott Caan, directed by Barry Levinson; the Untitled Oliver Stone/Edward Snowden Project (12/25/15), written and directed by Oliver Stone starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Shailene Woodley; Spotlight, directed by Thomas McCarthy, starring Mark Ruffalo, Michael Keaton, Rachel McAdams, Liev Schreiber and Stanley Tucci; and Sleepless Night starring Jamie Foxx and Michelle Monaghan. 


About Participant Media:

Participant Media (http://www.participantmedia.com/) is a leading media company dedicated to entertainment that inspires and compels social change. Founded in 2004 by Jeff Skoll, Participant combines the power of a good story well told with opportunities for viewers to get involved. Participant’s more than 70 films include Spotlight, Contagion, Lincoln, The Help, He Named Me Malala, The Look of Silence, CITIZENFOUR, Food, Inc., and An Inconvenient Truth. Participant has also launched more than a dozen original series, including “Please Like Me,” “Hit Record On TV with Joseph Gordon-Levitt,” and “Fortitude,” for its television network, Pivot (http://www.pivot.tv/). Participant’s digital hub, TakePart (http://www.TakePart.com), serves millions of socially conscious consumers each month with daily articles, videos and opportunities to take action. Follow Participant Media on Twitter at @Participant and on Facebook


About First Look Media

First Look Media (www.firstlook.media) was launched in 2013 by eBay founder and philanthropist Pierre Omidyar. First Look Media is a multiplatform media company devoted to supporting independent voices, from fearless investigative journalism and documentary filmmaking to arts, culture, media, and entertainment. First Look Media produces and distributes content in a wide range of forms including feature films, short video, podcasts, interactive media, and long-form journalism, for its own digital properties and with partners. First Look Media co-financed Spotlight, the company’s foray into the feature film world.

Jennifer St. Clair