How Ebola, Porn and the Human Organ Trade Led Me to the Ordinary | Ric Esther Bienstock

For twenty years Emmy award-winning documentary filmmaker Ric Bienstock has taken us around the globe to the darkest outposts of the human experience. Tackling some of the most pressing issues of our time, Bienstock has earned a reputation for gaining unprecedented access to her stories. Her revealing portrayals of porn stars and Ebola victims, human organ brokers and sex traffickers, transcend the sensational and challenge us to see these characters for who they are – human beings. In this engaging and thought-provoking talk, Bienstock shares some of the filmmaking experiences that pushed her to look beyond stereotypes and find the “extraordinary in the ordinary”.

Emmy-Award winning Canadian filmmaker Ric Esther Bienstock is best known for her ground-breaking investigative documentaries, including “Tales from the Organ Trade“, “Sex Slaves“, “Ebola: Inside an Outbreak“, and “Ms. Conceptions“.  Ric is globally recognized for her brilliant storytelling and her unique way of shining light into some of the darkest corners of the world. Her films have been screened at over 80 international festivals and aired in over 50 countries.  Ric has garnered dozens of prestigious awards including an Emmy for Outstanding Investigative Journalism, a Dupont Columbia Award for Excellence in Broadcast Journalism (the broadcast equivalent of the Pulitzer Prize), and two Amnesty International Awards. Most recently, in 2015 the Academy of Canadian Cinema and Television honoured Ric with the renowned Gordon Sinclair Award for Broadcast Journalism.

This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at