Programmed to Kill: Dengue, the new documentary from Malaysian filmmaker Gerard Benedict is set to air on the History Channel across Asia this week. The film takes an in-depth look at dengue fever, a disease unknown to many, that affects almost 1/2 of the globe. In just over 30 years, dengue has gone from having a presence in only 9 countries to becoming the world’s most rapidly spreading mosquito-born viral disease. In his documentary, Benedict examines many of the reasons why the dengue virus can be difficult to manage. But how did this film come about?
The former TV presenter, and producer based in Kuala Lumpur, Gerard Benedict met dengue expert Professor Lam Sai Kit of the University of Malaya with the intention to make a film about Nipah virus. But instead, found himself making a film on an entirely different topic. “He encouraged me to do a documentary on dengue instead because a potential dengue vaccine was in the coming,” Gerard told Break Dengue.
We caught up with Gerard for a quick-fire interview about the making of his powerful public health documentary to uncover more about the making of this epic tale. Read our exclusive interview with Gerard Benedict on Programmed to Kill: Dengue, and find out how his production of the neglected disease was realized.
Read the Q&A interview here