Recipient of the Primetime Emmy® for Breaking News
Jesse got his start in journalism and filmmaking during the very early 1980’s. He produced, wrote, directed and shot documentaries in Italy, England, the Caribbean and Central America. Jesse’s documentary subjects were US-based evangelical Christian missionary relief workers. He covered them as they served the poor and indigenous people in remote mountains of Guatemala where a bitter guerrilla war was being fought. Jesse followed a missionary relief team as they brought food, blankets and clothing to Nicaraguan war refugees who left everything behind and fled into the deep jungles of Costa Rica. He documented teams of US doctors and dentists as they dispensed free treatment to many hundreds of the very poorest citizens of post war Managua, Nicaragua.
In March of 1982 as Jesse was covering the work of US missionary group Verbo, in Guatemala when one of their members, Efrain Rios Montt seized power after a military coup. He then traveled with and documented the military dictator visiting government troops in the Guatemalan highlands to promote his “Rifles and Beans” campaign.
The Los Angeles Riots erupted in April of 1992. The ABC Network News bureau in Los Angeles hired Jesse to help with their riot coverage. He worked the story alongside Peter Jennings, Diane Sawyer, Ted Koppel, Bill Ritter, and the ABC news network producers to provide daily coverage of the riots for World News Tonight, Good Morning America, Primetime Live, 20/20, and Nightline.
Jesse is credited on hundreds of national television news segments, long form documentaries, scripted entertainment shows and television specials watched by tens of millions of viewers on ABC, NBC, CBS, PBS, BBC, A&E, VH1, MTV and more. Jesse’s work has been recognized with a Primetime Breaking News Emmy® and several LA Area Emmy® nominations. Gift is in production on two documentary films at this time (see below).
“GET THE PICTURE?” | ORIGINAL DOCUMENTARY FILM NOW IN PRODUCTION
CREDITS: Diane Wagner | Executive Producer, Jesse Gift | EP, Writer/Director, Camera, Avid, Photoshop, Premiere Pro, After Effects Editor | “Get the Picture” Original Music by Andre Pessis | Endless Frogs Music/ASCAP/Espy Music | Larry Batiste/Pure Delite Music (BMI)/adm.by BMG | Tony Lindsay/(LINDSEED MUSIC) ASCAP with Rico Nico
“RAMON RISING” | ORIGINAL DOCUMENTARY FILM NOW IN PRODUCTION
CREDITS: Diane Wagner | Executive Producer, Jesse Gift | EP, Writer/Director, Camera, Avid, Photoshop, Premiere Pro, After Effects Editor