Documentary Business

Peter Hamilton Consultants, Inc


I dipped into my African photo library to celebrate the New Year because the pic of my surprise meeting with the superb Nyala somehow captures why so many of us do what we do.

We search out the people, places, creatures, and landscapes that inspire compelling storytelling.

My editorial goal for Documentary Business is to throw some light onto how industry veterans and rookies alike can tell our stories amidst the ever-changing — and challenging — unscripted ecosystem.


  • The fifty posts I published in 2023 often returned to the #1 trend:  “How Netflix and the streamers are shaking up the documentary economy.”
  • An underlying theme was: “Look here for the opportunities!”



I’m blessed with many valued partners, notably…

  • The Rx Global team for inviting me to plan and produce sessions for MIPCOM, MIPDOC and MIPTV.
  • Faith Fuller’s invaluable Desktop Documentaries for co-publishing our detailed course on how to successfully develop and pitch unscripted projects.
  • Pact, the UK producers’ association, for co-producing our webinars on industry trends. (Big thx to Aimee Shimmin.)


  • I’m thankful to industry veteran Dan Salerno who regularly contributes his unique industry research and analysis to my posts and Pact webinars.
  • Dan also represented Documentary Business at the Greenscreen (Germany) and CCDF-14 (Taiwan) conferences.
  • StoryCentric’s Ed Hersh is a frequent, valued contributor.
  • Ruth Berry, Philip Shane, Tom Jennings, Wendy Bernfeld, Peter Worsley, Gregory Crofton and Michael Hoff also stood out as valued contributors.
  • Thanks to my editorial associates: Mexico City-based journalist/writer Caitlin Cooper and Camran Shealy, a recent graduate of Syracuse University’s Newhouse School.



  • I’m contributing to several nearly completed and very promising projects, including stories set in Africa.


  • For all of our 25 years, Krista Gonzalez has been a rock, providing the time-sensitive technical support required by a WordPress-hosted newsletter.

Meeting the Nyala 

I was moderating a strategy session near Pretoria for FOP Films, headed by Francois Odendaal. Francois is an amazing scientist, planner and documentary producer who leads EcoAfrica, a consulting firm that specializes in planning for national conservation programs and World Heritage sites. I stepped outside our meeting room, and there was the curious Nyala. He stayed close by, and I’ve never forgotten him.

Francois is completing Wild World Diaries, a 13-part series backed by SABC. He is now meeting with potential international distributors. Here is the series promo. Francois can be reached at

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