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Netflix Pushes ‘13th’ Oscar Bid With Oprah Winfrey, Ava DuVernay Interview Special

Variety logo Variety 1/25/2017 Todd Spangler
© Provided by Variety

Netflix, angling to appeal to Academy voters and win an Oscar for documentary “13th,” is releasing a half-hour interview special with Oprah Winfrey and director Ava DuVernay discussing the film.

The special, “13th: A Conversation with Oprah Winfrey & Ava DuVernay,” will be available to Netflix U.S. members on Thursday, Jan. 26. The documentary was nominated for an Academy Award on Tuesday, the fourth year in a row that Netflix has had a contender in the category.

In the interview, Winfrey asks about DuVernay’s filmmaking process, how she secured the interviews from across the political spectrum for the movie, and her passion for investigating the mass incarceration of African Americans in the U.S. The duo also discuss global reactions to “13th,” the current state of race relations in America, and DuVernay’s advice for President Trump’s administration.

According to Netflix, Winfrey agreed to the interview special after the two were talking after a screening of “13th.”

In “13th,” DuVernay, whose previous films include “Selma” and “Middle of Nowhere,” chronicles the history of racial inequality in the country and why the United States has the highest incarceration rate in the world (which disproportionately affects black men). The film’s title refers to the slavery-abolishing amendment of the U.S. Constitution.

“13th” premiered at the 2016 New York Film Festival last fall — the first nonfiction work to open the festival in its 54-year history — and became available on Netflix worldwide on Oct. 7, 2016.

Watch a teaser clip from Oprah’s interview with DuVernay:

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