Ten years after he directed the groundbreaking crowdsourced feature documentary Life in a Day — made up of amateur video clips selected from 80,000 submitted to YouTube and depicting people’s lives around the world on a single day (July 24, 2010) — director Kevin Macdonald is set to open a cinematic window onto human existence once more.
Life in a Day 2020, as the title suggests, is set to repeat the process a decade later, with anyone who wants to encouraged to film their life and tell the story of a day on Earth, this time on July 25, 2020. The YouTube Originals film reunites with Macdonald with Ridley Scott, who executive produced the first feature.
Like the original, Life in a Day is set to premiere at the Sundance Film Festival and on YouTube next year.
“Making the first Life in a Day was one of the most joyful and eye-opening experiences of my life,” said Macdonald. “Contributors were generous enough to share often quite intimate moments from their lives as part of a huge, life-affirming filmmaking experiment. I am thrilled, 10 years later, that we are making Life in a Day 2020. In that time, how have we changed? How has our relationship to filming ourselves changed? And at this extraordinary turning point in history what are we hoping for in our future?”
On July 25, the filmmakers are inviting everyone to capture and reflect the reality of their world over a 24-hour period, footage which then must be uploaded to YouTube’s dedicated site for the film by Aug. 2. A 30-person team of multilingual reviewers stationed around the world will then review and translate submitted videos, with the film’s three principal editors — Mdhamiri Á Nkemi (Blue Story, The Last Tree), Sam Rice-Edwards (Whitney) and Nse Asuquo (The Stuart Hall Project, The Jazz Ambassadors) — working alongside Macdonald to help shape the film’s narrative from the entries.
“Following the success of the 2010 documentary, this is an important moment to revisit this inventive film concept with Ridley and Kevin,” said Susanne Daniels, global head of original content for YouTube. “This project truly demonstrates the uniqueness of YouTube by showcasing the power of the human experience told through the eyes and cameras of individuals around the world.”
Life In a Day 2020 is directed by Macdonald, with Scott and Kai Hsiung serving as executive producers, and Jack Arbuthnott and Tim Partridge as producers. The documentary is produced by RSA Films in association with Flying Object.