“A stunning tribute to a remarkable young woman whose story had only just begun”
Lyra recounts the life and death of 29-year-old Northern Irish journalist Lyra McKee, who was shot dead while observing a riot in Belfast in 2019. Our judges described it as “a remarkable, multilayered, heartbreaking yet hopeful documentary”.
Directed by a close friend of McKee, the film weaves together multiple timelines, showing the night of the murder and its aftermath, as well as her childhood growing up in Belfast in the wake of the Good Friday Agreement.
“The director’s intimate knowledge of Lyra’s life underscored the story and we all fell a little bit in love with her,” one judge said.
The film uses recordings of McKee’s voice to narrate her story. It also includes contributions from her mother and friends, whose raw trauma and grief is palpable, and who chose to take part in the hope of preventing further political murders in NI.
The result, as one judge put it, is “not only a stunning tribute to a remarkable young woman, whose story had only just begun, but a seamlessly interwoven tale of Lyra’s life and life in Northern Ireland”.
The judge added: “The use of voice notes from Lyra allows her to take charge of her story – and rightly so – bringing with it a deep sense of intimacy and a lasting feeling of grief.”
The central tenet of this film is to explore the context and aftermath of a terrorist incident in a way that eschews the tropes of similar attack-related films. It explores the causes and effects of the 2019 terrorist attack at London Bridge and interrogates how society views individuals with criminal pasts.
Panorama: Mariupol – The People’s Story
Top Hat Productions & Hayloft Productions for BBC
The film-makers spent months gathering and verifying hundreds of hours of footage, mostly filmed by the residents of Mariupol. The documentary aims not to be a legalistic exploration of war crimes, but rather an examination of what they mean for the people enduring them.
Scandalous: Phone Hacking On Trial
BBC Current Affairs for BBC
For more than a decade, Britain’s biggest newspaper groups have claimed that the phone-hacking scandal ended in 2012, but this investigation shows that isn’t true and the practice continues. More than two years in the making, the team faced legal and access challenges, as well as press hostility.
After a DNA test reveals Luke, who grew up in a white working-class family in Rochdale, is not the son of the man he calls dad and is, in fact, mixed race, he embarks on a journey to understand his heritage and find his biological father.
This World: The Shamima Begum Story
BBC Current Affairs for BBC
The culmination of eight years of investigative journalism, this film offers the first in-depth interview with Shamima Begum, the young woman who left London as a teenager to join the so-called ‘Islamic State’. Journalist Josh Baker attempts to verify her claims and weigh up her culpability.