2017 Television: Spot News/Feature Reporting - Gold

Reporter Melissa Hogenboom and video producer Pierangelo Pirak entered the world of quantum weirdness, grappling in a visually engaging fashion with the theory that there may be multiple universes beyond our own. Equally intriguing ─ and unsettling ─ is the possibility that we may have cosmic twins very much like ourselves living in alternate universes. The ideas, usually confined to discussions among physicists and cosmologists, are driven by the mathematics of inflation theory and quantum mechanics. Hogenboom and Pirak explore the implications with several of the world’s leading theorists on alternate universes, inviting the viewer to at least glimpse the sort of speculation that has become respectable among serious scientists in recent years. Pushing the limits of the conceivable, it seems, can open new worlds of imagination that Hogenboom and Pirak enter with gusto. Their piece “offers a new way of speaking about a truly complex topic,” said Anna Nordbeck, a reporter for SVT, the Swedish public television network. “The reporting is suggestive and invites you to a mind-blowing world you’d probably never reach unless you have a special interest for it.” Hogenboom said she made the film “because I wanted to find an answer to the question ─ are we unique in the universe, something many of us have no doubt asked.” She added, “Winning the gold award for such an experimental film, tackling a really complex topic, is such an unexpected honor and inspires me to make more films like this.”