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PIX11’s digital documentary on Son of Sam receives honor

PIX11’s digital documentary, “No One Is Safe From Son of Sam,” is appearing on the popular short film website Short of the Week as a feature selection. The site is an international online showcase for top-rated short films and emerging filmmakers of all stripes. The PIX11 documentary made its Short of the Week debut on Monday, Aug. 28.

“No One Is Safe From Son of Sam” premiered on PIX11.com on Aug. 10 to mark the 40th anniversary of the capture of New York serial killer David Berkowitz (a.k.a. The Son of Sam). The eight-minute retrospective utilizes a treasure trove of archival news reports and footage from the WPIX vault as well as new interviews with PIX11 reporters and historians reflecting on the Son of Sam media coverage during the summer of 1977.

The project was helmed by Creative Services producer Heath Benfield and co-produced by WPIX director of digital and social strategy Rolando Pujol. It is a gripping retelling of the fear and paranoia New Yorkers experienced at the time – featuring Pujol, and PIX11 veteran reporters Mary Murphy and Arnold Diaz, in on-camera interviews conducted specifically for the piece.

“Everybody knows the Son of Sam, but the collective anxiety of that age has faded over the course of 40 years. This documentary is an attempt to evoke that frenetic atmosphere and reanimate the experience that held New York City hostage in 1977,” said Benfield of his intent for creating the film.

The project would not have been possible without the discovery of original newsreels and reports unearthed by Pujol deep in the WPIX archive. “As a child of the ‘70’s and growing up in New York, the Son of Sam case has loomed large my entire life.” The impression the case left on him inspired Pujol to seek and preserve this rare footage.

‘No One Is Safe From Son of Sam’ can be found at shortoftheweek.com starting today.