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How Reuters captured footage of indigenous Brazilians taking on Bolsonaro

Indigenous people of Yudja tribe perform a greeting dance during a four-day pow wow in Piaracu village, in Xingu Indigenous Park, near Sao Jose do Xingu, Mato Grosso state, Brazil, January 15, 2020. REUTERS/Ricardo Moraes - RC2PGE9I5YGN

By Reuters Communications

Last month, the Reuters multimedia team in Brazil led coverage on Amazon tribes coming together for a four-day tribal gathering to plan their opposition to President Bolsonaro’s push to open their reservations for commercial mining and agriculture.

The multimedia effort, by Leonardo Benassatto, Anthony Boadle, Leslie Adler and Ricardo Moraes, drew attention to the human interest stories of the indigenous Brazilians through videography, pictures and text reporting. The coverage was featured around the world including on CNN, ABC, France 24, FranceInfo, ZDF on TV, and AJ+.

On his experience covering the story on-the-ground, Reuters video journalist Leonardo Benassatto said, ”We drove more than 800km (480km on unpaved dirt roads) to reach Kayapo Indigenous Park, where the meeting of the Indigenous Brazilians happened. In addition to the dirt roads, it was necessary to cross the Xingu River. Upon arriving at Kayapo Indigenous Park, we set up a camp and spent five days covering the event, experiencing the tribes’ dancing, food and paintings.”

Benassatto explains, “We bathed in the Xingu River and also ate fish for lunch and dinner that also came from the river. We started working early every day, experiencing their dances, their food and their paintings.

“And each day to send in coverage, we traveled more than 200km to get internet access in a small village. Each edit took an average of 4 hours to be delivered.”

Commenting on Benassatto’s work, RVN digital editor Tom Platt says, “Leonardo shoots with an intimacy and dynamism that makes the viewer feel like they’re there.” Platt adds, “Above, below, walking alongside – Leonardo tries every space and shot available to him. The way he plans with focus and light makes for a beautiful edit. And it’s always character-led: focusing on the power and personality of the people he’s shooting.”

To view the Reuters coverage, click here .

[Reuters PR blog post]

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deepal.patadia @ thomsonreuters.com

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