The Documentary Unit

Operating from London, The Documentary Unit at BBC Studios is the home of high quality, thought-provoking and BAFTA award-winning factual television. Powerful storytelling is at the heart of what we do. Our output ranges from observational access series to history, arts and factual drama.

We work with the very best filmmaking talent to produce critically acclaimed shows like Murdered for Being Different, The Met: Policing London, The Secret History of My Family, Our World War, Britain's Forgotten Slave Owners, Louis Theroux: Dark States, and Life and Death Row.

The Team



Against the Law
Factual drama follows the true story of gay journalist Peter Wildeblood, whose illict love affair was one of the turning points in the part to legalisation of homosexuality in the UK.
Britain’s Forgotten Slave Owners
David Olusoga’s BAFTA-winning two-part documentary for BBC Two reveals the hidden history of the abolition of slavery in Britain.
Don't Take My Baby
BAFTA award-winning drama about a disabled couple facing the terrifying possibility of losing custody of their newborn.
Life and Death Row
This BAFTA award-winning series follows the lives of young people who are awaiting capital punishment in the USA.
Murdered for Being Different
Award-winning team from the ‘Murdered by’ strand takes a powerful look at the devastation caused by intolerance.
Reformation: Europe’s Holy War
Historian David Starkey tells the story of the Protestant Reformation and how it transformed the face of modern Europe.
The Met: Policing London
Returning for a second series in 2017, this hit documentary series follows the officers of Britain's biggest and busiest police service as they deal with life, death, crime and its victims, all across the capital.
Louis Theroux: Dark States – Heroin Town
Louis Theroux embeds himself in an Appalachian community that is being devastated and stretched to its limits by widespread heroin use.
Basquiat: Rage To Riches
Nearly 30 years after his death, this documentary film of Jean-Michel Basquiat details how the self-taught Brooklyn-born artist rose to be one of the greats on the international art marketplace.