On the last grey day of January 2014, American graduate Amanda Knox and her Italian then-boyfriend, Rafaelle Sollecito, were found guilty of the murder of British student, Meredith Kercher. It was the second trial and an unexpected outcome; Knox wept on television while Rafaelle was later picked up at the Italian border in what was reported as an attempt to leave the country.
Now, a brand new BBC3 documentary - Is Amanda Knox Guilty? - will air tonight revolving around the most recent developments leading up to the trial on January 30th.
We spoke briefly to Andrea Vogt, an Italy-based independent journalist and documentary-make, about the documentary process from development to writing and directing
Grazia Live: What was it about the story which made you decide to follow the Kercher case so closely?
Andrea Vogt: The day after Amanda Knox was arrested, I was asked to go to Perugia on freelance assignment for the Seattle Post-Intelligencer newspaper. The paper folded in 2009, but the story continued. Few could have imagined it would go on so long and become so big.
Grazia Live: Why did you decide to make a film?
Andrea Vogt:The producer and I felt there was a lack of accurate and thorough documentation of what has happened so far and why. This is an earnest effort to tell the story in an objective manner, free from the influence of partial outside interests. The BBC is the right place for that.
Grazia Live: Meredith was murdered in 2007. What sort of time frame have you been working on?
Andrea Vogt:The film has been in development for years. There were interviews and location shoots in Perugia, Florence, London, Croydon and Seattle but I’ve attended every trial since the case began in November 2007. Amanda Knox was absent from the Florence appeal, so telling that part of the story was a visual challenge. The film’s main strength, I believe, is the fascinating audio and visual documentation gathered over the course of the years from the investigation and trials. Most of it has never been or heard until now.
Grazia Live: The film features several interviews with the Kercher family – how impartial is it?
Andrea Vogt: I would not say the film focuses heavily on the Kerchers. It is simply a balanced approach to a global story that has generally lacked the perspective of the victim’s family. They are very private and have handled their great pain with admirable reserve. I have met them (as I have all the families involved) during press conferences and court hearings over the course of the years.
Grazia Live: It’s been seven years since her death. What it about the case which has gripped both sides of the Atlantic?
Andrea Vogt: It is a complex, controversial and ongoing saga involving beautiful young people from four different countries. The twists and turns are unpredictable, yet constant.
Grazia Live: What do you hope the film will achieve – and how do you think people will react to it?
Andrea Vogt: I hope the film offers an accurate, clear and complete overview of the case, while also respecting the memory of the victim, Meredith Kercher, and ultimately allows those who watch it to make up their own minds about the answer to the provocative question it poses.
Is Amanda Knox Guilty? will air on BBC3 Monday, Feb. 17, at 9 pm