Interview by Paul Salfen
Executive Producer Neil deGrasse Tyson and Academy Award Nominee Director Scott Hamilton Kennedy
In the spring of 2019, before anyone had heard of COVID-19, Kennedy began investigating a global measles epidemic and filming with top public health officials–including Dr. Anthony S. Fauci, MD; Karen Ernst; Dr. Paul A. Offit, MD; Dr. Peter J. Hotez, MD; Blima Marcus, DNP –as well as rare verite and interviews with anti-vaccine activists – like Robert Kennedy, Jr. (charting his part in Samoa’s tragic measles outbreak of 2019 and as he continues to garner GOP funding for a Democrat presidential bid today), Andrew Wakefield, and Del Bigtree – who were persuading parents by the millions to refuse vaccines for their children. Then COVID-19 happened. Acting quickly, Kennedy shifted his directorial eye to this once-in-a-century tragedy, as his family was caught in the maelstrom of COVID-19. Both skeptical and hopeful, SHOT IN THE ARM explores the cultural zeitgeist of vaccine hesitancy historically and in the context of the current COVID pandemic and how disinformation is its own disease. Can we replace cynicism with healthy curiosity and bridge the political divides that make us sick?