From Columbus, Ohio to Guerrero, Mexico and countless cities in between, the opioid epidemic has ravaged communities on both sides of the border. But what about the lives behind the headlines and statistics? The timely, provocative new five-episode SHOWTIME docu-series THE TRADE spotlights the crisis through the eyes of those most affected: the growers, addicts, cartel bosses and law enforcement hopelessly caught in its web. Directed and executive produced by Oscar nominee and Emmy® winner Matthew Heineman (Cartel Land), THE TRADE world premiered at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival and will debut on Friday, February 2 at 9 p.m. ET/PT on SHOWTIME.
For a look at the series go to https://youtu.be/hSh9go26awE;
THE TRADE is a continuation of Heineman’s searing examination of the border drug trade. His critically acclaimed 2015 documentary Cartel Land earned an Academy Award nomination for Best Documentary Feature and won three Emmy Awards, Best Documentary from the Director’s Guild of America and the Courage Under Fire Award from the International Documentary Association, among others.
“The vicious cycle of heroin addiction – and the collateral damage it inflicts on so many – is one of the most profound epidemics we face in this country,” said Vinnie Malhotra, SHOWTIME Senior Vice President, Documentaries, Unscripted and Sports Programming. “THE TRADE is a powerful and visceral odyssey from the poppy fields of cartel-controlled Mexico to the battle to save lives in heartland America. Heinemann masterfully delivers one of the most bold and emotional narratives in documentary today.”
“It’s been a great honor to follow up Cartel Land with THE TRADE,” said Heineman. “My goal with the series is to highlight the human side of the opioid epidemic through hopeful and emotional stories on both sides of the border. Although each character’s world is vastly different, they are all caught in the same machine – trapped in a never-ending cycle of dependency that they attempt to escape from.”
The character-driven verité-style docu-series crisscrosses North America to explore the opioid epidemic from the intimate perspective of growers, addicts and law enforcement on both sides of the border. The interwoven narrative transcends the headlines to convey with humanity and nuance the scope and gravity of the crisis. THE TRADE seeks to break through the simplistic and often erroneously counterproductive assumptions surrounding the opioid phenomenon by spotlighting those caught in the crisis: friends and neighbors, sisters and brothers.
THE TRADE is a joint production of Our Time Projects.