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Ask No Questions the Documentary

A LOFTY SKY PICTURES FILM

About the Film

About the Film

A former Chinese state TV insider is held in a brainwashing camp and compelled to accept the official narrative on a fiery public suicide, which he believes was a government plot.

“I have been mesmerized since I happened upon this. As close to Black Mirror as you’ll find in non-fiction, it is a topical, necessary and important film.”
- Jeffrey Radice, Slamdance Film Festival Programmer



Synopsis

When Chinese state TV blames his faith for a fiery public suicide, Chen Ruichang is detained in a Clockwork Orange-style brainwashing facility and forced to accept the government’s account. But Chen, a former insider of the state TV himself, believes it was all a government plot. A CNN reporter smuggled out footage of the event that day, but was then muzzled by Beijing. Now, her eyewitness testimony helps untangle an intricate conspiracy, as Chinese authorities begin pressuring the filmmaker’s family and business associates. Ask No Questions shows the deadly power of media under authoritarian control. It also shows the remarkable power of an individual who refuses to compromise the truth.



Reviews

Reviews

"A tantalizing, deeply unsettling, real-life thriller that couldn't be more surreal if it were fiction."

“Dissects a dramatic event with clear arguments and reasonable analysis–it is very well done. Darkness must be exposed, and Ask No Questions can play a valuable role.”

"The film is particularly relevant now... a cautionary tale about how hard it can be to come to the truth."

"Reflects all the best qualities of true crime and documentary...a sort of cinematic Serial."

"It’s a peek at an authoritarian regime’s surreal approach to keeping its preferred narrative in line. It’s also a portrait of a man with an infinite supply of courage."

"A wicked trip down the rabbit hole... Without a doubt, Ask No Questions is a must see."

"I have been mesmerized since I happened upon this. As close to Black Mirror as you'll find in non-fiction, it is a topical, necessary and important film."

"It is the humanity of the filmmakers and their obvious exasperation at the audacity of the Chinese government that makes the film work as well as it does."

"Like an ice bath with each revealed truth being another shred of ice raising the hairs on the back of your neck."

"A remarkable and heartbreaking story that will shatter your mind and shake you to the core."

"It shows the terrifying height of 'fake news' and presents a lot of difficult but timely questions about media, governmental authority, censorship, and freedom of the press."

"Shows how strong the human will can be."

Directors

Directors

Jason Loftus

Jason Loftus

Director, Producer

Jason Loftus is a Peabody Award-winning film producer and four-time Canadian Screen Award nominee. His work spans documentary, docuseries, virtual reality, narrative games, and animation. He is CEO of the Toronto-based Lofty Sky Entertainment and Lofty Sky Pictures. Ask No Questions is Jason’s directorial debut in a documentary feature.

Eric Pedicelli

Eric Pedicelli

Director, Editor

Eric’s films have highlighted women’s right to education in Ivory Coast, surveillance of activists in Rio de Janeiro, and internet censorship in Iran. He edited Black Code (directed by Nick de Pencier), examining perils faced by activists in the digital age. It premiered at TIFF and earned Eric a Canadian Screen Award nomination for Best Editing. Ask No Questions is his feature documentary directorial debut.

News

News

29Jul2020

INTERVIEW with the directors of the explosive investigative doc 'Ask No Questions' – Screen Magazine

Screen Magazine’s Joanna Kay talks with directors Jason Loftus and Eric Pedicelli about their explosive, investigative documentary Ask No Questions. The film looks at an extreme case of state propaganda in China and a former state TV insider who refused to follow the party line.
27Jul2020

INTERVIEW with Jason Loftus and Eric Pedicelli of 'Ask No Questions' – Battleship Pretension (Podcast)

Tyler Smith goes in-depth on China, objectivity, and the filmmaking process with Ask No Questions directors Jason Loftus and Eric Pedicelli. Hear the full interview on the latest Battleship Pretension podcast.
19Jul2020

REVIEW: ‘Ask No Questions’ Shows Horrors Of Communist China; Hollywood, LeBron James Should Take Notice – Daily Wire

Hollywood stars have little to say about China, and for very good reason. The film industry relies on the Communist nation to bolster its box office fortunes. At a time when expensive, IP-driven properties aren’t a sure thing, that matters... All of the above makes watching “Ask No Questions” infuriating.
18Jul2020

REVIEW: Ask No Questions: Fighting Fire with Fire – Battleship Pretension

It is the humanity of the filmmakers and their obvious exasperation at the audacity of the Chinese government that makes the film work as well as it does.
15Jul2020

'Ask No Questions' Documentary Exposes Fake News – Film Threat Podcast

Chinese officials arrest, detain and brainwash a former TV insider who believes a fiery public suicide was staged for political reasons. Co-Directors Eric Pedicelli and Jason Loftus investigate how fake news is created.
14Jul2020

'Ask No Questions' a Google Play "Top Documentary"

Canadian documentary feature 'Ask No Questions' is now listed as a "Top Documentary" on the Google Play platform. It has also been a featured New Release on YouTube Movies.
13Jul2020

REVIEW: 'Ask No Questions' – The Documentary Actors (and LeBron James) Must Watch – Hollywood in Toto

The documentary from directors Jason Loftus and Eric Pedicelli examines a critical event in modern Chinese history...It’s a peek at an authoritarian regime’s surreal approach to keeping its preferred narrative in line. It’s also a portrait of a man with an infinite supply of courage.
12Jul2020

Western filmmaker probes Chinese propaganda, feels long reach of regime censors – Just the News

Hollywood stars routinely look the other way as Chinese film censors slice, dice and sometimes block U.S. films from their theaters, even titles with no ties to Chinese government or culture. Director Jason Loftus knew this but forged ahead with his own film criticizing China’s propaganda efforts, and he says he paid a financial price for it.
06Jul2020

When you ask no questions... – Fern TV

Ask No Questions has come in a timely fashion especially during this pandemic. This film will make you analyze the information that is being fed to you... Learning what had happened to Chen Ruichang who was an insider for Guandong TV is unbelievable.
05Jul2020

'Ask No Questions' a "Top Documentary" on Apple TV – Apple TV

The new documentary feature 'Ask No Questions,' which premiered January at Slamdance is now listed as a "Top Documentary" on Apple TV. The film is also featured in Apple's "New & Noteworthy" section and was named a "Standout Discovery" on the platform. It is being distributed by 1091 Pictures.
04Jul2020

'Ask No Questions' named a "Standout Discovery" on Apple TV

"Ask No Questions" was released on Apple TV on June 30 and already the film has been listed among Apple TV's "Standout Discoveries." It is available in North America on all major online streaming platforms and is being distributed by 1091. You can find the film here: geni.us/Ask-No-Questions.
03Jul2020

'Ask No Questions' Among New Movies to Watch This Weekend – VARIETY

Where to Find It: Available on Amazon and other video-on-demand platforms A Chinese state TV insider is held in a facility until he accepts the official narrative of a public suicide and lets go of his beliefs in a government conspiracy.
02Jul2020

New Movies to Stream This Week – The Washington Post

“Ask No Questions” is a documentary about the apparent public self-immolation of several Falun Gong practitioners in 2001, and inconsistencies in the Chinese government’s official account of the incident. Film Threat calls the movie “wildly intriguing and entertaining.”
19Jun2020

Review: 'Ask No Questions' balances personal story with true crime deconstruction – Films Gone Wild

At once both extremely personal and universal, this documentary reflects all the best qualities of true crime and documentary...a sort of cinematic Serial...I found myself extremely engrossed.
18Jun2020

Documentary Preview: “Ask No Questions” finds the ultimate case of “fake news” – Rogers Movie Nation

A staged Chinese stunt? A cover-up? This one has me intrigued.
15Jun2020

Uncovering China's Perfect Lie – China Uncensored

Host Chris Chappell goes in-depth with 'Ask No Questions' director Jason Loftus in this interview on the China-focused YouTube channel with over 1.3 million subscribers, China Uncensored.
07Jun2020

'Ask No Questions' director Jason Loftus on VR's prospects for saving the film industry – IndieWire

Loftus knows the technology has yet to cross over to a general festival crowd. “There isn’t a built-in audience for this,” he said. “Because it’s a new experiment in the film space, a lot of people don’t have the headsets. So you’re out there in the Discord chat rooms saying, ‘Hey guys, come to my movie!’” However, he added, it beat the alternative that many festivals have offered as they try out online solutions: “It was reminiscent of being at a festival screening. It gave us that kind of feeling. You don’t get that when you throw the film up online and have a Zoom chat.”
31May2020

‘Ask No Questions’ now at KFF Market at 60th Krakow Film Festival

The riveting documentary feature Ask No Questions is part of the KFF Market at the 60th Krakow Film Festival, now underway in Poland. Accredited industry pass holders can screen the film in the KFF Market video library through June 7.
15May2020

1091 Nabs 'Ask No Questions' Docu – DEADLINE HOLLYWOOD

The doc, which premiered at this year’s Slamdance, examines the captivating story of a Chinese state TV insider who is held and forced to accept the state line on a fiery public suicide he believes was a government plot. Evidence is credibly presented, shocking, and thorough, and the investigation leads into allegations of nefarious activity at a governmental scale.
15May2020

1091 acquires 'Ask No Questions', sets release for June 30 – Yahoo! News

1091 has acquired rights to Ask No Questions, a journalistic true-crime documentary from Lofty Sky Pictures as well as filmmakers Jason Loftus and Eric Pedicelli. It slated to be released across all digital platforms throughout North America beginning on June 30.
14May2020

Official Trailer for 'Ask No Questions' Doc About Authoritarian Control – FirstShowing.Net

"They forced me to sit in front of a TV for eight hours a day." 1091 Media has released an official trailer for a compelling documentary titled Ask No Questions, an inside look at the way China's media participates in the government's authoritarian control. It just premiered at the Slamdance Film Festival earlier this year, and will be available to watch on VOD this June. A Slamdance programmer stated, "I have been mesmerized since I happened upon this. As close to Black Mirror as you'll find in non-fiction, it is a topical, necessary and important film."
30Apr2020

REVIEW: A VR Movie House Experience of 'Ask No Questions' – SF Weekly

The film is particularly relevant now, as Americans wonder whether to trust official reports on the coronavirus pandemic — whether they come from the White House or the Chinese government. Ask No Questions serves as a cautionary tale about how hard it can be to come to the truth, especially when powerful central governments have an interest in the way the public perceives a given event.
28Apr2020

VR Movie House: Ask No Questions (2020) – The Roxie Theater (San Francisco)

Experience the gripping feature documentary “Ask No Questions” in a special virtual reality theatrical screening and filmmaker Q&A. The team behind the film, which premiered to rave reviews at the Slamdance Film Festival in January, is responding to the global shelter-in-place by bringing its film to audiences in a virtual world, while raising funds for the Roxie!
27Apr2020

An Interview with the Filmmakers Behind ASK NO QUESTIONS – Salt Lake Dirt

One of the standouts at this year's Slamdance Film Festival was the documentary Ask No Questions. We were fortunate enough to interview the filmmakers Jason Loftus and Eric Pedicelli.
27Apr2020

Slamdance Documentary 'Ask No Questions' Moves Festival Run to Bigscreen VR – VR Focus

If you own an Oculus Quest or Go headset then hopefully you spent some of last week enjoying Tribeca Immersive’s Cinema360 programme which had 15 short films to enjoy. Tomorrow that trend continues as Bigscreen will play film festival host to documentary Ask No Questions.
26Apr2020

The Roxie Theater Experiments with VR Screening of 'Ask No Questions' – SF Weekly

On April 28, the Roxie Virtual Cinema brings another unique opportunity to its audience with a virtual reality presentation of the 2020 documentary Ask No Questions. Presented by Lofty Sky Pictures, with support from SF DocFest, proceeds from the event go to the Roxie.
21Apr2020

'Ask No Questions' part of effort to 'stream a movie, help a local theater' – Beyond Chron

This acclaimed... documentary concerns a former Chinese State TV insider being brainwashed to accept a government cover-up.
19Apr2020

'Ask No Questions Film Moves Festival to Virtual Reality – Nerd News Social

With the recent shut in from Shelter In Place, and Stay At Home orders in place, everyone is trying to be good humans, and not doom their communities, and country. It’s hard to believe that our world will still be the same when we get out of this pandemic.
18Apr2020

Riveting Documentary Feature 'Ask No Questions' Moves Festival Run Into Virtual Reality – OrcaSound

Independent filmmakers are known for innovatively thinking outside the box to promote their films. The team behind the gripping feature documentary “Ask No Questions” is offering audiences a chance to enjoy the theatrical experience of viewing a film — in a virtual reality cinema screening.
17Apr2020

A Film Festival Screening In VR? ‘Ask No Questions’ Documentary Is Trying It, And Here’s How It Will Look – DEADLINE HOLLYWOOD

The filmmakers behind this year’s Slamdance documentary Ask No Questions saw their film’s festival run waylaid this spring by the industry’s coronavirus shutdown. Now they are teaming with San Francisco’s DocFest, where the pic was headed next, in an effort bring the fest screening experience to audiences in their homes.
17Apr2020

Here's How 'Ask No Questions' VR Screening Will Look – Yahoo! Entertainment

The idea is an interesting one: Beginning April 28, Lofty Sky Pictures will screen Ask No Questions, a 2D film, in a 3D virtual theatrical environment dubbed VR Movie House, with each of the four showings to be followed by filmmaker Q&As.
17Apr2020

Ask No Questions Tries Film Festival-Style Screening in VR – IMDb.com

A Film Festival Screening In Vr? It’s the latest effort from the indie film industry to survive in a world suddenly without access to its lifeblood: festivals like the shuttered SXSW and Tribeca and specialty theaters nationwide.
20Mar2020

Ask No Questions Gets Support from Ai Weiwei

China's most notorious artist says Ask No Questions has important role to play exposing darkness in China.
18Mar2020

Phoenix Film Festival Screening of 'Ask No Questions' Postponed Due to Coronavirus

Due to the uncertainty surrounding the coronavirus, the 2020 Phoenix Film Festival is being postponed and along with it the screening of 'Ask No Questions.' The festival looks forward to playing on new dates in the future, and we look forward to sharing our film with audiences in Phoenix. Stay tuned, and stay safe!
05Mar2020

'Ask No Questions' Available at Agora Doc Market at 22nd Thessaloniki Documentary Festival

Following the very hard decision to suspend all onsite activities of the 22nd TDF/Agora Doc Market organizers are moving ahead with an online version. 'Ask No Questions' will be available to screen for accredited industry and press delegates to the Agora Doc Market beginning March 7.
02Mar2020

Tickets Now Available for 'Ask No Questions' at PFF – Phoenix Film Festival

Tickets are now available with three showings on opening weekend! Looking forward to seeing you at Arizona's largest film festival.
19Feb2020

Interview - Ask No Questions – "One Week Only" Podcast

"Ask No Questions" is a gripping documentary investigation into a suspicious public suicide in China and the subsequent government persecution of the Falun Gong religious movement.
15Feb2020

Documentary ‘Ask No Questions’ Exposes China’s Propaganda Against Falun Gong – Vision Times

Ask No Questions is a documentary that was screened at the Slamdance Film Festival last month. Directed by Jason Loftus and Eric Pedicelli, the documentary shows the dark side of the Chinese government and how they run a vicious propaganda campaign to discredit the spiritual practice of Falun Gong.
10Feb2020

Spoiler-free review of Ask No Questions – Mrdeathbreath (YouTube)

"Fantastic film. 10/10. A must see!" This short (2+ min) spoiler-free review shows how audiences are reacting to Ask No Questions following its premiere in Park City in late January.
28Jan2020

Slamdance Documentary Asks Questions About Chinese Government Oppression – KPCW

There are film-makers on every corner in Park City this week—including some from the Slamdance Film Festival, playing at the Treasure Mountain Inn. One of the entries is a documentary, “Ask No Questions”, which aims to turn a probing eye on the Chinese government.
28Jan2020

IE writer Misa Shikuma brings us reviews from the 2020 Sundance Film Festival – International Examiner

The Sundance Film Festival took place in Park City, UT, January 26 – February 2, 2020. International Examiner writer Misa Shikuma attended to provide coverage of select films featuring API stories, artists, actors and/or originating from API countries. Here she reviews: A Thousand Cuts; Ask No Questions; and Be Water.
28Jan2020

Film Review: ‘Ask No Questions’: There’s Fake News and Then There’s Fake News – Epoch Times

Slamdance ‘20 presents exposé of Chinese Communist Party framing Falun Dafa
24Jan2020

Slamdance doumentary ‘Ask No Questions’ shows state propaganda’s effect in China – Park Record Newspaper

In Jason Loftus’s documentary, “Ask No Questions,” which will screen Jan. 25 and 29 during the Slamdance Film Festival, audiences can see how propaganda is used to sway public opinion, especially in authoritarian countries.
23Jan2020

Ask No Questions – Letterboxed

It's surprising to learn Jason Loftus isn't a journalist when he approaches the making of this documentary with more straightforward journalistic integrity than you'll find at many major publications. His history with the topic is stated from the very beginning, he presents arguments from both sides, and he never passes judgement even while his business is blackballed and his wife is cut off from contact with her family...
23Jan2020

Slamdance Film Festival : Ask No Questions – FilmSchool Radio

In ASK NO QUESTIONS Chinese State TV blames his faith for a fiery public suicide, Chen Ruichang is detained in a Clockwork Orange-style brainwashing facility and forced to accept the government’s account.
14Jan2020

Ask No Questions to Premiere at Slamdance

Lofty Sky’s story of brainwashing and abuse in China is among nine documentary features in competition in Park City; screens Jan. 25th and 29th.
06Dec2019

Slamdance Film Festival picks 20 films for competition – Salt Lake Tribune

In "Ask No Questions" a former Chinese state TV insider is held in a brainwashing camp and compelled to accept the official narrative on a fiery public suicide, which he believes was a government plot. Directed by Jason Loftus and Eric Pedicelli.
03Dec2019

Ask No Questions to debut at Slamdance – Playback

The film from directors Jason Loftus and Eric Pedicelli will make its world premiere as part of the festival's Documentary Features lineup.
02Dec2019

Slamdance unveils 2020 feature film competition line-up – Screen Daily

New work from Uruguay, Japan and South Africa are among the 20-strong Slamdance Film Festival feature film competition line-up unveiled on Monday (December 2) alongside the second Breakouts selection.
02Dec2019

Slamdance Film Festival Unveils 2020 Competition Lineup – Variety

Slamdance Film Festival has unveiled its 26th anniversary narrative and documentary feature film competition programs, as well as the lineup for its new breakouts section.
02Dec2019

Chernobyl, Bigfoot and Political Drag Queens Highlight Slamdance 2020 Lineup – The Wrap

The Slamdance Film Festival unveiled its 2020 lineup of microbudget films Monday that will premiere at the Sundance alternative, among of which include projects about Chernobyl, a brainwashing camp, drag queens and a taxidermist looking for Bigfoot.
02Dec2019

Slamdance Unveils Films In Narrative And Documentary Competition, Sets Return Of Russo Fellowship – Deadline

The 26th edition of the Slamdance Film Festival has set its slate for the films in the Narrative and Documentary Feature Film Competition programs as well as the lineup for their Breakouts section. The fest will take place in Park City, Utah January 24-30, 2020.