CNN knows a ratings hit when it knocks one out of the park. Thus, just six months after airing the Sanjay Gupta revelation that was “WEED”, the Cannabis News Network (CNN) will air a sequel called “Weed 2: Cannabis Madness,” again featuring Gupta going in on pot.
Like every national news station, CNN clearly wants to keep its ratings sticky, and looks to be essentially duplicating its formula with different characters. Here are the details, via a press release from CNN:
After sparking a national debate with his acclaimed documentary Weed, and op-ed “Why I changed my mind onweed,” CNN’s chief medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta delves deeper into the challenges of legalizing medical marijuana.
Weed 2:Cannabis Madness: Dr. Sanjay Gupta Reports, premiering Tuesday, March 11th at 10 pm ET, looks at U.S. federal laws that consider marijuana a drug with no medicinal value and serious scientists who say they’re wrong. It is the politics of pot – the politicians vs. the patients.
Legal in 20 states plus the District of Columbia, limited access to medicinal marijuana has caused significant battles between legislators and qualified patients seeking this type of treatment. Vivian Wilson, a 2-year-old girl suffering from chronic seizures, is one of those patients. Wilson made headlines in 2013 when her father confronted New Jersey Governor Chris Christie pleading “please don’t let my daughter die” and imploring him to legalize medical marijuana in the state.
In the one-hour documentary, Gupta gets exclusive access to the journey of Vivian’s family who, along with many patients, are willing to do anything to get medical marijuana and face many legal challenges along the way. He meets with dozens of families dubbed “medical marijuana refugees” who have moved to Colorado, where pot is legal, to get medical marijuana for their sick children. Gupta also examines disparities in the U.S. government’s research into the benefits of medical marijuana and reports on groundbreaking discoveries in other countries. Gupta’s investigation takes him around the world looking for answers, including a rare inside look at a pharmaceutical company in the United Kingdom that is the only one in the world turning pot into a prescription drug.
It sounds like more of the same. Which, for those who devote their lives marijuana on a daily basis, will mean more repetition and more hyperbole. But for the few Americans (and people in this world) who still remain opposed to legalization and don’t “get” cannabis, it will certainly open even more eyes and change even more perceptions.
And that’s always a good thing. The episode will air in two weeks, but if you can’t wait for it, that’s okay: CNBC’s own pot documentary hits TV Screens tonight. Because every mainstream news story knows when there’s smoke, there’s fire in the ratings.