- LOS ANGELES
Production house Interrogate is teaming up with filmmaking team Jeff and Michael Zimbalist and their Peabody Award and Sports Emmy-winning media company, All Rise Films. The newfound partnership signifies an expansion for both companies, with Interrogate--which maintains offices in L.A., New York and Sydney--also handling commercial representation in both the U.S. and Australia for the Zimbalist brothers as a directorial duo. This marks the Zimbalists’ first formal representation in the ad arena.
Through All Rise, the Zimbalists are used to handling inception-to-completion services for all their projects. Jeff Zimbalist said, “Partnering with Interrogate, it gives them access to our built-in production crew and us the opportunity to stretch what we do, taking on all the technical and aesthetic challenges that working in the short-form brings.”
The brothers’ creative interests and career pursuits first aligned in 2004, when they founded All Rise Films to specialize in documentaries and scripted work based on or inspired by real people and events. Since then, they’ve delivered on that mission, writing, directing and producing ambitious high-energy films with an emphasis on heart, often ones that take place in the world of sports, music, and international crime.
Whether they’re making the Oscar-shortlisted documentary Favela Rising, the gripping ESPN 30 for 30 film The Two Escobars, or chronicling the aftermath of the Chapecoense football club in Brazil after a tragic plane crash in Nossa Chape, the Zimbalists share a willingness to dive deep into the worlds of their subjects. This has led the siblings to be sought out by clients including BET, PepsiCo, Quincy Jones, Imagine Films and the United Nations.
The brothers work deftly across formats, ranging from features like the fictional biopic Pelé: Birth of a Legend, to the HBO surf documentary Momentum Generation to TV series like Phenoms for FOX. Their focus on human drama pivots beautifully into the world of music, as showcased in ReMastered, the investigative eight-part music-doc series they recently created for Netflix.
George Meeker, executive producer at Interrogate, said he was taken with the Zimbalists after seeing Momentum Generation. Meeker related, “I’m a surfer, and even grew up surfing with one of the subjects of the film. No one ever captures the authentic feeling of the surfing world the way they did.” After looking up the Zimbalists, Meeker realized many of his favorite episodes of ESPN’s much-loved 30 for 30 series were made by the duo.
The dynamics and built-in shorthand of their workflow is a sight to behold, said Meeker. “One’s a writer and his brother knows how to interpret his words the way only a brother can.”
Michael Zimbalist described the allure of short-form fare, saying, “With commercials, we can take a high level of ambition and pack it tightly into every second, every frame, to tell a complete story.”