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HBO’s Tiger Woods Series by Two White Directors Is a Flashpoint for ‘Decolonizing’ Docs

HBO’s Tiger Woods Series by Two White Directors Is a Flashpoint for ‘Decolonizing’ Docs

When HBO Sports announced upcoming docuseries “Tiger,” controversy followed. The problem didn’t lie in the sometimes-tabloid story of champion golfer Tiger Woods, but in its telling: The directors are two white men, Matthew Heineman and Matthew Hamachek, who previously collaborated on the Oscar-nominated “Cartel Land,” on which Hamachek served as editor.

HBO dropped the production’s introductory press release July 9, in the middle of a summer marked by the deaths of Ahmaud Arbery and George Floyd, nationwide protests, and Black Lives Matter. A community of Black, Indigenous, and people of color (Bipoc) documentary filmmakers responded to “Tiger” as one more film in a series that never seems to end: a story of Black people told by white men. And this time, they would not allow their voices to remain on the margins.

When Heineman announced the film on Facebook July 10 (“Our goal was to dive deeper and create an

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