Don Hardy is an award-winning documentary filmmaker who recently completed production on a new feature documentary, Citizen Penn, that tells the story of the birth and growth of Sean Penn’s aid organization J/P HRO after a catastrophic earthquake shook Haiti in 2010. Citizen Penn premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival in 2020 and debuted on Discovery+ in May of 2021.
Don wrapped the first season of a new documentary series for Disney+ called Pick of the Litter in early 2020. The series is based on the documentary film of the same name he produced and directed in 2018. The film was purchased by IFC Films/Sundance Selects and premiered in theaters and on VOD in August of 2018. It quickly became one of the most successful documentaries of the year.
Don served as executive producer and showrunner for the Disney+ series and directed several of the episodes.
Don is also in production on a short-form documentary series about the homelessness epidemic in California titled The Way Home. The first season is currently available on Amazon, Apple, and Google.
In 2018 and 2019 Don was selected to participate in the American Film Showcase, traveling as a US Envoy with the State Department as a part of this prestigious film diplomacy program.
Don’s previous film, Theory of Obscurity, about the legendary music and art collective known as The Residents, premiered at SXSW in 2015 and was released theatrically by Film Movement in April of 2016.
Don’s film, The Human Experiment, was released in theaters by Area 23a and on VOD by FilmBuff in the spring of 2015. Narrated and executive produced by Oscar® winner Sean Penn, the film lifts the veil on the shocking reality that thousands of untested chemicals are in our everyday products, our homes and inside of us.
Don also served as Director of Photography on Batkid Begins, which premiered at Slamdance in early 2015. Batkid Begins was released by Warner Brothers/New Line Cinema in June 2015.
In 2011, Don’s film, Love Hate Love, premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival. The film won several film festival awards and had its US broadcast premiere on the Oprah Winfrey Network in 2012.
His first film, Witch Hunt, premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival in 2008 and was broadcast on MSNBC.
In addition to his extensive film work, Don also creates high-end brand films for a variety of companies and nonprofits. His work in this realm is as varied as his film work: From Olympic hopefuls to children striving to create social change through music, Don strives to connect viewers to stories through emotion and humanity. Clients such as Adidas, Cisco, Kaiser Permanente, and Bay Area Music Project choose to work with Don because of his sensitive storytelling approach.
Don has won numerous awards for his films, photography, and editing, including major film festival awards from Cinequest, Woods Hole Film Festival, Seattle International Film Festival, and Sonoma International Film Festival. Over the years, Don has also been awarded 6 regional Emmys.