Mari Shibata

Mari Shibata

Journalist & Filmmaker

  • Location: London / Tokyo
  • Career stage: Experienced
  • Freelancer: Available

Features journalist working as self-shooting Producer-Director on pieces of video journalism, short documentaries and arts films for online platforms worldwide. She's currently in the process of starting up a platform featuring filmmaking tips, camera gear reviews and video tutorials led by women, whilst freelancing as a Video Journalist for's features team

Mari gained an eye for observational news footage whilst at Associated Press Television News headquartered in London, where she worked as Deputy News Editor, Media Manager and Producer for over three years. She has since shifted into shooting mini-documentaries around the UK for digital platforms AJ+, Fusion and Viral Thread. She has written on human rights issues for Washington Post, New Statesman, Index on Censorship and VICE, often shooting photography to accompany pieces - highlights include the last national gathering of atomic bomb survivors in Hiroshima, world’s biggest e-waste “dump” in Ghana, and the forced cancellation of dissident rapper’s concert in Morocco.

As an artist, Mari makes hybrid documentaries where she shoots solo in an observational style and adopts an artistic spin the edit. Her most recent film Bashoiri - that explores the heriarchy of sumo wrestlers outside the ring - premiered with NOWNESS, and her portrait of Greek town Eleusis that contributed to winning its bid to become 2021 European Capital of Culture. As a projectionist for an opera on Wikileaks cables written by Sebastian Lakowski, Mari developed the concept of audience surveillance through the use of live videography and audience participation of social media projected on walls - which premiered at Tete a Tete Festival in 2014 and supported by Arts Council England.

A self-taught filmmaker, Mari started directing films after winning grants through BFI Future Film with which she directed Break-Away, a short 3D documentary about a contortion break-dancer. She studied her BA in Music at St. John’s College, Cambridge.

Work History

Multimedia Journalist (Video, Photo, Writing) - Thomson Reuters Foundation

Feb 2017 - Present

Video Journalist - AJ+ - Aljazeera Media Network

Jun 2016 - Present

Video Journalist & Filmmaker - Fusion Media Network

Jun 2016 - Present

Contributing Writer - Broadly, VICE UK, Motherboard - VICE Media LLC

May 2015 - Present

Media Manager - International Video - Associated Press

Sep 2014 - Nov 2015

Multimedia Contributor - Index on Censorship

Sep 2014 - Jun 2015

Field Producer - Television News - Associated Press

Nov 2012 - Jan 2015

Freelance Deputy News Editor - International Video - Associated Press

Oct 2012 - Sep 2014

Shooting Director / Producer, Editor - Nairobi based documentary - British Film Institute, Future Film x United Nations Association - Grant Winner, #Tweetapitch Competition

Mar 2014 - Jun 2014

Freelance Output News Producer - International Video - Associated Press

Oct 2012 - Sep 2013

Director / Producer - 3D Short Film - British Film Institute - Future Film: Grant winner BoldFace Productions

Oct 2012 - Dec 2012

News Assistant - International Video - Associated Press

Jul 2012 - Jul 2012

Director / Producer - Short Music Documentary - British Film Institute, Future Film x Doc Next - Grant Winner Step2TV

Sep 2011 - May 2012


Music - Bachelor of Arts, Honours - University of Cambridge

Sep 2007 - Jun 2010


  • Report Writing
  • Video Editing
  • Digital Journalism
  • Documentary Film
  • Documentary Photo Essays
  • International Journalism
  • Short filmmaking
  • Videographer


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