Dear Jeff Collins: A contract is a promise

Jeff Collins, Executive Producer of National Geographic’s American Colony: Meet the Hutterites, says “no editorial promises were made” to the Hutterites of King Colony:

Here are some of the editorial promises made by Jeff Collins to the Hutterites of King Colony as part of the addendum to their signed contract:

  • Producer agrees that the Program will not criticize, ridicule, or include any disparaging statements about the Hutterite church, religion or cultural traditions.
  • Producer’s intentions are to celebrate Participant’s way of life as a model for family values.
  • The Program is intended for family audience, and Producer agrees Participant shall speak for itself, Producer will not speak for Participant.
  • The program will not contain any depiction of lewd sexual conduct or obscenity.
  • The program is a documentary and not a motion picture presentation.
  • Producer agrees that the title “The Hoots” will not be used as the title of the Program.

Read the whole contract here.

  • Sally

    what shocks me is the unreality of the show, some of the things are so stupid, it looks like all you did was make fun of people, I pity the people of King Colony, now they have to deal with 40,ooo hutterites, I expected  more of National Geographic channel, I have been gone from the Hutterite sysyem for 20 years and feel you did a great injustice to the people..I think you picked all the negative things and purposely didnt get any positive things..the damage is done now..

    • Sally – You’re not alone. I’ve heard many others share the same sentiments. Part of the problem is that what the Hutterites consider a “documentary” is nothing like what Jeff Collins had in mind. As Jeff has written on his blog, he was NOT going to King Colony to “bring back stories about them [the Hutterites] growing corn.”

      Rather, Jeff needed a story with conflict. And that’s the story he brought to life.

  • Kristin Sturdevant

    Thank you, Alan, for keeping this in front of us. Kristin

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