Tim Bell
Tim Bell

The weaponization of communications and the rise of the notorious British PR firm and its leader Tim “The Fixer” Bell, is the subject of the “Influence” documentary that was a finalist in the grand jury prize category at the Sundance Film Festival in 2020.

Bell Pottinger imploded in September 2017 after it fomented racial tensions in South Africa in support of its beleaguered former president Jacob Zuma and the Gupta family.

The firm also was the “go-to” firm for the Bush II administration’s selling of the Iraq war. It hauled in $500M from 2004 to 2011 for its work on behalf of the Pentagon, CIA and National Security Council.

Bell rose to power after serving as the image-maker of former British prime minister Margaret Thatcher.

Influence directors Diana Neille and Richard Poplak have made the film free to watch for people living in the UK and South Africa “to help arm citizens with the information they need to better understand the industry, according to the documentary’s website.

Americans may buy/rent the firm on the Apple, Google and YouTube platforms or through providers Comcast, Verizon Fios and Dish.

View the trailer.