When director Rachel Boynton first started filming her new oil business documentary "Big Men" in Africa, she ran into a big problem gaining access to the players involved: nobody knew who she was. 

"When I came home I talked to my husband and said, 'I bet I could bring on a high-powered executive producer that people are going to recognize to help get the film made. That way, people would feel I’m hot s**t, instead of just little ole me running around the Niger Delta.'" she told theblot.com. "So we sent a package to Brad Pitt. He read it, liked it and came on board."

With a recognizable name behind her, Boynton gained unprecedented access over six years to the inner workings of the oil industry. Her film "Big Men" focuses specifically on the discovery of the first commercial oil field off the coast of Ghana, the Texas oil company that drills there, the investors, and the Ghanian politics and other dealings that all combine to create an intense feature-length documentary. 

"Like a number of recent hot-button docus, from 'Crude' to 'Inside Job,' Rachel Boynton’s extraordinary 'Big Men' should come tagged with a warning: The side effects of global capitalism may include dizziness, nausea and seething outrage," writes Variety's Scott Foundas in a review.

Check out a trailer for "Big Men," currently in limited release around the country, below. 

Michael d'Estries ( @michaeldestries ) covers science, technology, art, and the beautiful, unusual corners of our incredible world.

'Big Men' oil documentary gets big boost from Brad Pitt
Actor's decision to support director Rachel Boynton's new film gains her unprecedented access into the inner-workings of the billion-dollar oil industry.