Brian M. Rosenthal, the New York Times journalist and contributor to Left/Right documentary series The Weekly, has won a 2020 Pulitzer Prize.
The Prize for Investigative Reporting, was for his five part exposé in the New York Times about New York City’s taxi industry, which became a key episode in the documentary series The Weekly, produced by the New York Times and Left/Right for FX and Hulu.
Rosenthal’s story revealed how reckless loans, dispensed by a small group of taxi medallion owners, put thousands of immigrants in debt while bankers made huge profits. The story also showed how government officials allowed lenders with political connections to skirt certain regulations, and chronicled the devastating impact the debt had on drivers, causing several to die by suicide. This reporting led to local, state and federal investigations.
In the winning remarks for his 2020 prize, Rosenthal said that the commitment by the New York Times and its staff to the story was supported by innovations like The Weekly: “The first time I met with Sam Dolnick and Jason Stallman they asked me to help them with an episode for the Times’s new TV show. What I didn’t know was that The Weekly was actually going to be helping me. The episode’s producer, Suzanne Hillinger, became my de facto partner. And so many others helped, like Dan Barry, Liz Baylen, Liz Day and Maddy Rosenberg.”
This is Rosenthal’s second Pulitzer win, having previously been part of the reporting team at The Seattle Times that won the 2014 Pulitzer Prize in Breaking News Reporting for documenting a landslide that killed 43 people, as well as looking into whether the landslide could have been avoided.
The Weekly first premiered June 2, 2019 on FX in the US, with next day streaming on Hulu US. Each half-hour episode features a New York Times journalist investigating one of the most pressing issues of the day. With more than 1,600 journalists reporting from 160 countries each year, the Times publishes 250 stories a day – investigative reports, political scoops, cultural dispatches. And each week, The Weekly chooses to tell one of these stories in a visual and unforgettable way.
The Weekly is produced by Red Arrow Studios company Left/Right and The New York Times. Executive producers of The Weekly are Mat Skene, Jason Stallman, Sam Dolnick, Stephanie Preiss, and Ken Druckerman and Banks Tarver for Left/Right. The series is distributed worldwide by Red Arrow Studios International.