Netflix announces documentary series on one of Brazil’s gruesome crimes: ‘Elize Matsunaga: Once Upon a Crime’

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São Paulo: “I still don’t know how to explain what kind of emotion made me pull that trigger,” says Elize Matsunaga, more than nine years after murdering and dismembering her husband Marcos Matsunaga. For the first time after the case, the defendant breaks the silence in an interview for Netflix’s new documentary series, Elize Matsunaga: Once Upon a Crime, which premieres on July 8.

The trailer features testimonials from Elize, family members and colleagues of her and the victim, as well as experts who followed the investigations – including journalists, defense and prosecution lawyers, and criminal experts.

With four episodes of 50 minutes each, the production also revisits Elize’s past, from her childhood in Chopinzinho, a small town in Paraná, to the troubled relationship with the businessman before his murder. It also brings the details that followed the crime, from attempts to cover it up the crime till the, through confession, the arrest, the trial in 2016 and also temporary leaves granted by the Brazilian laws, which were accompanied by the film crew.

The documentary series is produced by Boutique Filmes for Netflix, and directed by Eliza Capai, who says: “I felt a great moral responsibility to direct this series. Not only for Marcos’ family and friends who suffered with this tragedy, but also for Elize’s family, people who knew nothing about it, but who also suffer the consequences until this day”.

  • Director: Eliza Capai
  • Writer: Diana Golts
  • Executive Producer: Gustavo Mello
  • Director of photography: Janice d´Avila
  • Editors: Vinicius Prado Martins e Daniel Grinspum
  • Investigative Journalist: Thaís Nunes

Boutique Filmes

For nine years, the São Paulo-based production company has been dedicated to telling high-impact Brazilian stories. With a strong presence in the international market, the company is home to the main talents of independent production and partners with the most important players in the business. Boutique owns three nominations for International Emmy Awards and was one of the pioneers in production for streaming in Brazil, with the series 3%, Onisciente and Temporada de Verão (Netflix), among other prestigious works.