Nimrod Nation (Sundance Channel)
Life seems to move slowly in Watersmeet, Michigan. Like much of Michigan’s Upper Peninsula it’s a place with its own pace, its own rhythms. For the most part, these are the rhythms of the natural world, and the beauty of Nimrod Nation lies, in part, in director Brett Morgen’s reluctance to move his camera. Sunlight filtered through evergreens throws shadows on bright snow. Fishermen set their shelters and drill into thick ice. And drill some more. Hunters track deer, shoot, skin, and butcher. But there’s another tempo at work in Watersmeet, too. Inside the gym the mighty Nimrod basketball team races through practice. Sweat pours. The coach—who’s also the school principal and sometime substitute second-grade teacher—roars. And throughout Watersmeet, citizens worry over the team, the game, the season. Old men sit with coffee and remember their own playing days. Mothers pack lunches and express concern. In eight half-hour installments we watch and learn about life here, about a reality deeper than any false construct of “reality television,” more complete than any work of fiction. We marvel at the beauty of this place and the passionate connections among these people. And we’re grateful for the experience. For capturing a rich sense of place reminding us of what community truly means, Nimrod Nation receives a Peabody Award.
Executive producers: Brett Morgen, Adam Pincus, Kevin Proudfoot, Lynn Kirby, Samuel J. Paul, Laura Michalchyshyn. Senior producer: Lyle Gamm. Story producer: Eliza Hindmarch. Producers: Joshua Bennett, Todd Lubin, Jeff Fisher, Erica Forstadt, Benjamin Wolf, Matthew Akers, Christo Garcia. Associate producer: Chelsea Hoffman. Editors: Vanessa Procopio, Diana Decilio, Tim Atzinger. Photography: Paul Mailman, Vasco Nunes, Wolfgang Held. Original music: Jeff Danna.