Simon and Jonathan Chinn’s 8-part Netflix documentary series Captive focuses on eight distinctive kidnapping situations, with unprecedented access to both the hostages and, in most cases, the perpetrators.
“We had a number of criteria for stories that would work,” Simon tells Dazed. “We wanted a really big range in terms of where they were set, and the kinds of hostage situations they focussed on. We knew we wanted a jihadist story, and then more opportunist kidnappings like the Brazil story. We were interested in Somali pirates and the way they operated and then when we came across the US prison siege, for example, we knew we had to do it because it was such an amazing story. First we had to assess whether the stories could sustain an hour of television, with the prerequisite layers and twists and turns, and then of course access was fundamental. There were a number of stories we found that we absolutely wanted to do but for one reason or another the access just didn’t come through. So there were some frustrations but not too many – in the end most of the stories we wanted to do, we were able to, and often with access to the point of view of the kidnappers.”
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