President Barack Obama and former First Lady Michelle Obama sat down with American Factory directors Julia Reichert and Steven Bognar to talk about the Netflix documentary and why they chose it as the first feature released by their company Higher Ground Productions.
In the three-minute clip posted by Netflix on Wednesday, the Oscar-nominated, Emmy-winning directors asked the famous couple why they decided to produce film and television, to which they replied that since they’ve left their traditional law careers, telling stories has been their primary focus professionally.
“We want to be in relationships with people and connect them and work together with them,” explains President Obama. “You have to know their story, you have to know them,” Reichert says, finishing Obama’s thought.
Expanding on their mission in making a deal with Netflix, Michelle Obama says, “Higher Ground is a reflection of both of us, so that means that, you know, our platform is going to look a little bit like everything. Just like the world is a little bit of everything.”
American Factory follows a factory in Ohio that is shutdown, purchased by a Chinese company, and then refurbished and filled with blue collar, American workers. After winning a jury prize for its directing at the 2019 Sundance Film Festival, it was acquired by the Obamas in partnership with Netflix.
American Factory is now available to stream on Netflix.