85 Min - Documentary - 2017


When it comes to our health, there are very few institutions that are both competent and independent. We want to rely on doctors, of course, and health officials, as well. They, in turn, take their cues from the World Health Organization. But what if the trust that billions of people around the world put on this institution is misplaced?


This personal investigation tells the story of how the WHO has been infiltrated and influenced by industry, and how the member States misuse the UN-organization for their own national economic interests. Whether dealing with the tobacco scandal, swine flu or Fukushima - the WHO plays a daunting role. It lacks funding, power and transparency. And its decisions end up helping the pharmaceutical companies and the nuclear energy industry more than the victims. The WHO was created as a guardian of world health, but it has become the plaything of individual interests.

Lilian Franck shows a frightening portrayal of our present society, in which governmental politics is becoming obsolete.


General information

Official page : trustWHO

Poster download

Presskit download

“This documentary depicts a deep crisis of the WHO, which is on the verge of becoming a health risk due to private interests as well as a lack of funding and transparency.” Süddeutsche

“”Trust Who” is a brave solo mission.” (Kino Kino, BR)

“What Lilian Franck uncovered through research and interviews with journalists, activists and whistleblowers is both terrifying and worth watching!.” Tip Berlin

“… The wide range of questions with which Lilian Franck confronts critics and WHO officials during an extensive filming process makes for a highly convincing documentary. In the end, it poses the important question as to whether the WHO – with 70% of its budget financed by non-governmental sources like industry – is still able to fulfill its duties.” Kölner Stadt-Anzeiger

“Lilian Franck’s documentary critically examines how the work of the World Health Organization WHO is influenced by its various financial backers and partnerships to the detriment of the general public. The filmmaker persistently confronts her high-ranking interview partners from the Geneva authorities with allegations made against the WHO with regards to the tobacco industry, pandemic alerts during the swine flu and the assessment of health consequences of the Chernobyl and Fukushima nuclear disasters.”

“The World Health Organization protects us in the best possible way by alerting the public, taking precautions and recommending the appropriate actions! If only… The WHO’s authorities have long been infiltrated by industry and corruption. They downplay catastrophes or exaggerate pandemics – however politics and the pharmaceutical lobby see fit. Director Lilian Franck is outraged by this, so she does her research.“

“Franck’s conclusions are sobering and a cry out for a restructuring of the institution that is now largely supported by NGOs and foundations. The facts she presents are crushing. The personal approach emotionalises the complex topic. “

“The topic of ´trustWHO´ is important. Lilian Franck’s documentary gloomily depicts how the World Health Organization WHO, founded 70 years ago with the aim of achieving the best possible level of health for all people, is now dominated by lobbyists of the nuclear, tobacco or pharmaceutical industries. Lilian Franck gets through to the very heart of the matter by confronting her interview partners by means of ruthless, tenacious and persistent questioning, refusing to be turned down or thrown off by empty phrases.“ Deutschlandfunk Corso

“Lilian Franck’s documentary film “trust WHO ” is a comprehensive portrait of the World Health Organization WHO. Through extensive discussions with WHO authorities and critics alike, she provides a deep insight into the structures of the organization. This shows how commercial enterprises are increasingly enforcing their interests within the WHO, endangering or even taking lives on one hand, and affecting many other public organizations on the other.”

“Lilian Franck believes that the WHO should speak more openly about such problems. Because their work ultimately extends to our everyday lives, affecting many factors from medication and vaccinations to health promotion.” (; there I was quoted as a” WHO expert “)

  • Author(s)

    Lilian Franck
    Robert Cibis
    Anja Neraal
  • Director(s)

    Lilian Franck
    Thomas Schlottmann (Japan)
  • Producer(s)

    Robert Cibis
    Lilian Franck
    Arash T. Riahi
    Karin C. Berger
  • Camera

    Joanna Piechotta
    Thomas Schlottmann DP
    Francesco Garbo
    Börres Weiffenbach
    Philipp Künzli
    Robert Cibis
  • Sound

    Matthias Petsche (Music)
  • Editor

    Anja Neraal