2020 Academy Award Best Documentary Feature

American Factory


In post-industrial Ohio, a Chinese billionaire opens a factory in an abandoned General Motors plant, hiring two thousand Americans. Early days of hope and optimism give way to setbacks as high-tech China clashes with working-class America

About The Team

Julia Reichert & Steven Bognar are Ohio based Oscar & Emmy winning documentary filmmakers whose work has screened around the world.

Bognar & Reichert's films include AMERICAN FACTORY 美国工厂, A LION IN THE HOUSE, THE LAST TRUCK: CLOSING OF A GM PLANT, SPARKLE and NO GUNS FOR CHRISTMAS (a New York Times OpDoc). Their films have screened at top film festivals, and on HBO, PBS and Netflix.

AMERICAN FACTORY 美国工厂 premiered at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival, where it won the Best Director: U.S. Documentary prize, and where it was acquired by Netflix and Higher Ground Productions, the company created by President & Mrs. Obama. AMERICAN FACTORY 美国工厂 also won the Gotham Award, the Independent Spirit Award and the Cinema Eye Honor for Best Documentary. Bognar & Reichert won the Best Director Award from the Director’s Guild of America, the IDA Awards and the Primetime Emmy Awards, and the Critic’s Choice Award for Best Political Documentary. Over a dozen publications, including the New York Times and Washington Post, listed the film as one of the year’s top ten films. AMERICAN FACTORY 美国工厂 debuted on Netflix and in cinemas in August 2019. In February 2020, the film won the Academy Award for Best Feature Documentary.

Bognar & Reichert’s THE LAST TRUCK premiered at the 2009 Telluride Film Festival, screened on HBO, and was nominated for an Academy Award. Their film A LION IN THE HOUSE, a co-production with ITVS, is a four-hour film about kids fighting cancer. It premiered in Documentary Competition at the Sundance Film Festival, screened theatrically across the U.S., was broadcast on INDEPENDENT LENS in 2006 as a two-night primetime PBS special. The film won the Primetime Emmy for “Exceptional Merit in Nonfiction Filmmaking.”

Bognar & Reichert are the recipients of the 2019 Full Frame Film Festival Tribute award, a 2019 United States Artists Fellowship, the 2019 Visionary Award at DOC NYC and the 2020 George Stoney Award. Both are members of the Academy of Motion Pictures and the Television Academy.

Julia Reichert is a four-time Academy Award nominee, for her films UNION MAIDS, SEEING RED: Stories of American Communists, THE LAST TRUCK and AMERICAN FACTORY 美国工厂. Her first film, GROWING UP FEMALE, is a landmark documentary of the early Women’s Liberation Movement, and was selected for the National Film Registry by the Library of Congress. Julia is the recipient of the 2018 IDA Career Achievement Award, the 2019 Hot Docs Outstanding Achievement award and a national touring retrospective curated by the Wexner Center for the Arts and the Museum of Modern Art, which debuted in May 2019 at MoMA. Reichert is Professor Emerita at Wright State University. She is also a mom and a grandma.

Steven Bognar’s solo films PERSONAL BELONGINGS, PICTURE DAY and GRAVEL all premiered at the Sundance Film Festival. PERSONAL BELONGINGS also screened at SXSW, and aired on P.O.V. Bognar’s short film LAST REEL premiered at the Telluride Film Festival and became a New York Times OpDoc. Bognar is a former professor at Wright State University, and has guest lectured at Harvard, Yale, Columbia, Stanford and American universities.

Julia Reichert, Steven Bognar
Steven Bognar, Julia Reichert, Jeff Reichert, Julie Parker Benello
Executive Producer
Jeff Skoll, Diane Weyermann

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