Deadline’s Doc Talk Podcast: ‘Girls State’ Directors Amanda McBaine & Jesse Moss On How Roe V. Wade Reversal Intruded On Exercise In Mock Government

As award-winning directors Amanda McBaine and Jesse Moss prepared to shoot their new documentary Girls Statethey had no way of knowing real-world events would intrude upon the production in a major way. Nor, of course, did their protagonists.

Just as hundreds of young women in Missouri were assembling for an annual exercise in mock government, the draft Dobbs opinion leaked, signaling the U.S. Supreme Court’s intent to reverse Roe v. Wade. McBaine and Moss join Deadline’s Doc Talk podcast to discuss their film and how the Dobbs ruling impacted high school-age girls embarking on their campaigns for governor, state supreme court and other high offices.

The filmmaking couple calls Girls State a “sibling” – not a sequel – to their 2020 film Boys Statewinner of the Emmy for Outstanding Documentary or Nonfiction Special. Missouri’s Girls State and Boys State programs took place at the same time and same location, and the differences between them speak volumes about realities for young women eager to explore the arena of politics.

McBaine and Moss explain how Taylor Swift’s music became important to the Girls State experience – and how one of the artist’s songs ended up in their film that’s now streaming on Apple TV+. And Moss explains why he thinks Girls State could be the last non-star driven vérité film that will earn support from a big streamer.

The directors also turn the tables on Doc Talk co-host John Ridley, asking the Oscar winner who directed the new Netflix drama Shirleyabout Shirley Chisholm, how he approached telling the story of the first African American woman to mount a serious campaign for president.

That’s on the new episode of Doc Talk, hosted by Ridley and Matt Carey, Deadline’s Documentary Editor. Doc Talk is a production of Deadline and Ridley’s Nō Studios. Listen to the episode above or on major podcast platforms including Spotify, iHeart and Apple.

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