Following his Oscar-nominated historical drama The Post, Steven Spielberg is coming to the small screen with a new television project. Deadline reported this week that the iconic director will work alongside Alex Gibney (known for documentary films such as Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief and We Steal Secrets: The Story of Wikileaks) to executive produce a documentary series for the Discovery Channel.
The six-part series will be titled Why We Hate and will use the disciplines of psychology, neuroscience, sociology, and history to explore the scientific and social dynamics behind the human capabilities of hatred.
As Gibney explained in his statement discussing the project, the series aims to gain an understanding into the evolutionary purposes of the emotion and understand exactly why humans can hate the way they do. “This is not a series that simply documents something that’s happening, it’s an inquiry – an attempt to understand why we hate, through the science, and through a sense of common humanity,” the filmmaker said. “Hate is in our DNA. If we begin to understand this, that’s how we begin to get to a point of being able to hope that we can overcome hate.”
Spielberg added, “Getting to the root of the human condition is something I find not only fascinating, but absolutely necessary in understanding who we are. With the team in place, we delve into historical and modern-day stories of hate, traveling around the globe to uncover its mystery in others and in ourselves. If we understand why we act the way we do, we can change the way we act. That is what we are uniquely capable of as human beings.”
The series marks Spielberg’s effort to continue his politically relevant filmmaking and, like films such as Schindler’s List, The Color Purple, and Munich, fits in his wheelhouse of work that explores difficult subject matter and asks tough questions about humanity.
The Discovery Channel has not yet set an expected premiere date for Why We Hate.