Tatiana Pollastri, David Biller, Eraldo Peres, Eduardo Francois and Chris Gillette sprang into action on Jan. 8 when violence erupted in Brazil’s capital. Supporters of former President Jair Bolsonaro rampaged through the presidential palace, Supreme Court and Congress.
Photographs from Brasilia-based photographer Peres landed in the New York Times, Washington Post, The Guardian, Sweden’s Svenska Dagbladet, France’s Le Monde and Spain’s El País. Peres was able to get inside the ransacked buildings to photograph the vandals in action. At risk to himself, Peres sent the photos directly from his camera to Andre Penner in Sao Paulo, who edited and filed to the desk. AP quickly produced a video edit of stills showing the crowds at Congress, then a comprehensive, dramatic video of Bolsonaro supporters storming the building and the Supreme Court.
Next they produced a video with President Lula’s reaction. Brazil-based video journalist Pollastri and senior producer Chris Gillette worked with video stringer Eduardo Francois shooting scenes of arrests and police vehicles on the streets. The text story bylined by David Biller and Diane Jeantet appeared in The Washington Post and ABC News and landed on front pages, including that of the Philadelphia Inquirer. In the days that followed, Biller executed follow-up stories and did a series of live television hits for GMS clients CGTN, MSNBC and NBC's Andrea Mitchell, among others.