updated 11/2/2008 4:07:10 PM ET 2008-11-02T21:07:10

NEW YORK (Hollywood Reporter) - MSNBC is going on a "Witch Hunt," picking up a documentary about a zealous California prosecutor for its nascent film banner.

The Toronto Film Festival and AFI Festival entry centers on the district attorney in Kern County, north of Los Angeles, who allegedly overstepped his powers in pursuing child molestation cases in the 1980's. He remains in office.

Journalists Dana Nachman and Don Hardy ("Doing Time") directed the documentary, which Sean Penn executive produced; Pearl Jam provided the music.

MSNBC Films will air the documentary on the network this spring and may explore options for theatrical release. The division was launched by MSNBC earlier this ear, with the film-festival favorite "Dear Zachary" as its inaugural title. That picture, too, looked at some dark themes -- the death of a well-liked man at the hands of his violent ex-girlfriend and the family's subsequent quest for justice.

Reuters/Hollywood Reporter

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