Documentary Business

Peter Hamilton Consultants, Inc

PBS Distribution’s Joe Barrett & Tracy Beckett on PBSd and the Changing Documentary Market. Our MIPTV Webinar

PBS Distribution‘s Joe Barrett and Tracy Beckett joined me for our well-attended Meet The Executives session at MIPDOC in Cannes.

Joe and Tracy described PBSd‘s role and structure within the PBS system.

We discussed buying trends among both public broadcasters and streaming platforms, PBSd’s sweet spots, and the business and rights issues that can determine the success and failure of their projects.

We later picked up these threads and more in our Documentary Business webinar.

Watch here (22′):


[0:40] Meet Joe Barrett and Tracy Beckett

[1:50] PBS Distribution: A separate distribution arm for both national PBS productions and international commissions.

[4:00] How do independent productions find distribution through PBSd?

[8:00] What’s the answer to a difficult distribution market? Bundling services.

[10:00] Which genres are currently selling? Science and History are the Sweet Spots.

[11:25] Natural History: the fit with PBSd.

[14:20] How do producers choose and evaluate their relationship with a distributor?

[18:30] Producers, here’s why PBSd wants to meet you at markets!

[20:00] The twice-yearly PBSd virtual showcase is a way to share your work with buyers without having to travel.

[21:00] Peter’s special thanks to PBSd for many years of encouragement and support.


  • Joe Barrett leads sales strategy and execution for International Program Sales, E-Commerce, and Retail, and is responsible for product and sales plans in the Factual, Kids, Drama and General Audience genres globally.
  • Tracy Beckett is the Commissioning Editor, CoProduction & Acquisitions for PBS Distribution (PBSd).  She is responsible for acquiring a wide array of factual content from independent producers from around the world for the PBSd catalog. She looks for finished films but also raises production financing from platform partners for high-quality projects in development.
  • Read more about PBSd here.

More Webinars from MIPDOC & MIPTV


  • MIPTV Takeaways: Dan Salerno with Liz Levenson, Cactus Tree Entertainment (LA) and Anne Olzmann, Managing Director, Albatross World Sales (Germany) and Peter Hamilton
  • JULIE LINK, Co-Founder + Co-CEO, GLISK– Germany on Agents: How They Help Develop, Pitch and Manage Projects for the Streamers
  • MIPDOC CASE STUDY – TIME: A Journey Through Thousands of Years with ZDF Studios’ Nikolas Hülbusch (Unscripted Director) and Off The Fence’s Jia Zhao (Director Sales & Coproduction, Asia)

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