The Shorty Awards honor the best of social media and digital. View this season's finalists!
From the 8th Annual Shorty Impact Awards


Finalist in Podcast


Hindsight brings to life some of history’s extraordinary figures for those who want to know about them while being entertained. Step into the shoes of dictators, artists and famed poets, and explore the world from their perspective. Catch them in a lie or get caught up in their struggle. Through in-depth research and interviews along with an immersive soundscape, this award-winning docudrama series promises a journey of hope, hard truths and entertainment.

Hindsight was born out of a passion to connect the historical and geopolitical dots of the Middle East. Our aim has been to re-engage audiences, millennials and third culture citizens who may feel put off by the steady stream of negative headlines out of the region. Our objective has been to lift the lid on the Middle East and explore its rich history, culture and unique characters, all while providing context for today's conflicts.

Veteran actor Charles Dance (HBO’s Game of Thrones and Netflix’s The Crown) is the series narrator.  With authority and a bit of cheek, Dance guides listeners on a unique ride through history, providing context and truth to the drama surrounding each character.

As the series progressed and gained a wider audience, we explored other parts of the world for stories of great and infamous historical figures who might not have otherwise found a place in western podcast formats. Narrative explorations of titans from Nigeria, Russia as well as sporting giants. In the latest season, we hear from  some of history’s most influential women. 


Strategy and Execution

Al Jazeera English is the only global news organization in the Middle East that competes directly with the biggest US and UK-based news outlets for readership, viewers and social subscribers. We’re often measured by our ability to navigate a region where freedom of speech is discouraged. But Al Jazeera stands out as news people can trust with stories they don’t often see anywhere else.  

So you might be wondering why we’re making a podcast about dead people, and in first person. But it works. We offer our audience stories about people they may have hardly heard of or never even knew existed. We bring the podcast to life through intense research, interviews with historians or people who knew the characters. Thanks to our extensive network, we often uncover these individuals, like Saddam Hussein's personal translator, for example.

Just as important is the voice, authenticity is the key. Only a born and raised Ugandan can convincingly play Idi Amin. At every stage, we ask: are we being true to the character and to its history? The challenge we sometimes face is finding something unique about a character who’s long been gone, like Catherine the Great. While the series is based on actual events, it’s impossible to know what she said to herself in her most personal moments. But it is possible to be inspired by true events to bring her character to life through dramatizations. Usually, by delving into the past, we gain a deeper understanding of contemporary issues and conflicts. Hindsight doesn't neatly fit into conventional genre categories, but its primary innovation lies in its storytelling.


At Hindsight, our goal is to be inclusive of diverse audiences and for our series to resonate with them across cultural and international boundaries. Our listenership are truly global, with the following top five countries, in order of listenership:

- United States

- United Kingdom

- Canada

- Australia

- Saudi Arabia


The next five countries from which our listeners are tuning in:

- Egypt

- India

- Nigeria

- South Africa

- Germany


Our objective was to introduce figures to an audience they might not otherwise have known about. Our hope has been to engage people with a new culture, a different time and a different place. Connecting moments in our history with news happening now. Our journey has taken us from 18th century Russia to 21st century football in Qatar.

When we feature a character from a new country, for example, we see listenships from that nation grow.  Like when we featured Nigeria’s Sani Abacha and Germany’s Ulrike Meinhof.

We are immensely proud of this genre-bending series mixing drama and historical, 1st person acting and star narration. 


Video for Hindsight

Entrant Company / Organization Name

Al Jazeera Digital


Entry Credits