As the filmmakers for the popular Netflix docu-series Making a Murderer gear up for a possible second series, they revealed that the first project almost didn’t happen at all because the state of Wisconsin tried their best to shut the project down. They’re now concerned it may happen again.
The Mirror reports that Moira Demos and Laura Ricciardi, the filmmakers of Making a Murderer, thought they would go bankrupt before they finished the first installment of the film after the state of Wisconsin took them to court in an attempt to shut their efforts down. Ricciardi said the following.
“When I received calls on my cell phone from one of the lead investigators on the case asking where I was so he could serve me with a subpoena? Lots of things were going through my mind at that point. We were already financially-strapped, but I have a legal background. How would we come up with retainer [for legal representation]?”
Ricciardi also said that they already had around 300 hours of footage when they were served with papers to appear in court. Luckily, the judge sided with the filmmakers.
“If the state had prevailed that would have shut us down, because we just didn’t have the infrastructure [to provide the amount of footage they were asking for]. Ultimately, the judge ruled in our favor.”
The filmmaker also spoke out of the follow-up to Making a Murderer. They plan to make the next film shorter than the first one, but it will still have numerous details about Avery’s case.
“We’re hoping to do something a little shorter next time around. We’re keeping our options open.”
Meanwhile, campaigners are stepping up their game in an attempt to get Avery a new trial. Per Shaun Attwood, who talks frequently with the Avery family, there is a fear that Wisconsin will try again to shut down the next film. Attwood, along with many other Avery supporters, feel that the state is hiding something, and in turn, are putting up strong efforts to prevent more information about the case from reaching the public.
“Freedom of expression is guaranteed under the US constitution and the fact they are putting up so much resistance shows that the whole hierarchy has something to hide. This isn’t the case of one or two people involved, it’s becoming more and more apparent that more and more people are up to their necks in it…. The fact that they tried to stop the show going ahead is a worry – and it would not surprise me if more legal action befalls Netflix to prevent a season two.”
Avery, serving a life sentence for the 2005 murder of 25-year-old Teresa Halbach, isn’t allowed to watch Making a Murderer, despite putting in requests to his social worker and warden to view it. Attwood thinks that the only way Avery will be able to see a film about himself and the case that’s reached the hearts of millions, if is he’s released from prison.
“There are a lot of rules in prisons. I don’t know if he has a right to watch it, in general there is an expression in prison. ‘you have nothing coming.’ It’s got to be heartbreaking that he can’t see it – he’s been incarcerated for 28 years and his hopes are getting raised by something that could affect his life….”
A petition to get Steven Avery pardoned from prison has reached a little over 500,000 of its 1 million signatures goal. Supporters remind those that haven’t signed it yet, that it’s not too late to reach out help.
[Photo by Netflix]