NEW AMERICAN EXPERIENCE SPECIAL PREMIERES IN CONJUNCTION WITH 50TH ANNIVERSARY OF PRESIDENT'S ASSASSINATION
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
October 14, 2013
RENOWNED PITTSBURGH FORENSIC PATHOLOGIST
SPEAKS WITH WQED ABOUT JFK’S ASSASSINATION 50 YEARS LATER
Fifty Years: JFK Assassination Premieres Friday, October 18 at 7:30 p.m. on WQED-TV
NEW AMERICAN EXPERIENCE SPECIAL PREMIERES
IN CONJUNCTION WITH 50TH ANNIVERSARY OF PRESIDENT’S ASSASSINATION
American Experience: JFK
Premieres Monday and Tuesday, November 11-12 at 9:00 p.m. on WQED-TV
PITTSBURGH—Well known for his criticism of the Warren Commission’s theory that the 35th President of the United States was assassinated by a single bullet, former Allegheny County Coroner and renowned forensic pathologist Dr. Cyril Wecht will sit down with WQED to discuss his findings in observance of the semicentennial of President John F. Kennedy’s assassination on November 22, 1963.
On Friday, October 18 at 7:30 p.m. Dr. Wecht will discuss his involvement in the case with WQED’s Chris Moore in a special broadcast called Fifty Years: JFK Assassination.
This WQED production airs in advance of AMERICAN EXPERIENCE: JFK, a new four-hour, two-part special on November 11 and 12 at 9:00 p.m. in conjunction with the 50th anniversary of the President’s death. Forever enshrined in myth by an assassin’s bullet, John F. Kennedy’s presidency has often defied objective appraisal. This new portrait, part of the Peabody Award-winning AMERICAN EXPERIENCE series, The Presidents, offers a fresh assessment of the man, his accomplishments and his unfulfilled promise. Produced and directed by Susan Bellows, JFK features interviews with Kennedy family members and historians including Robert Dallek, Robert Caro, and Evan Thomas.
JFK provides a fresh look at an enigmatic man who remains one of the nation’s most beloved and mourned leaders. Beginning with Kennedy’s childhood years as the privileged but sickly second son of one of the wealthiest men in America, the film explores his early political career as a lackluster congressman, his successful run for the U.S. Senate, and the game-changing presidential campaign that made him the youngest elected president in U.S. history. With the benefit of recently opened archives, the film recounts his struggles with life-threatening illnesses and his efforts to keep them hidden from the public. JFK offers new perspectives on his complicated private life, including his relationship with his wife, his close connection to his younger brother, Robert, and his complex bond with his powerful father. It also reevaluates Kennedy’s strengths and weaknesses in the Oval Office as he navigated some of the most explosive events of the 20th century: the disastrous failure at the Bay of Pigs, the urgent demands of an increasingly impatient civil rights movement, the Cuban Missile Crisis, and the escalating conflict in Southeast Asia.
JFK is the 17th program in AMERICAN EXPERIENCE’s The Presidents series, which has won dozens of awards, including Emmys, Peabodys, and duPont-Columbia Journalism Awards. Says Executive Producer Mark Samels, “With our presidential biographies, we strive for a better understanding of the men who have held the office. While we’re interested in the decisions they made, we also want to know why they made them — what in their lives led to a particular worldview? What shaped these men and how did those factors in turn shape our country?”
“John F. Kennedy is an iconic figure in American politics, known for his soaring rhetoric and the youthful energy and glamour he brought to the presidency,” says filmmaker Susan Bellows. “However, he wasn’t a born politician, and he struggled with debilitating health challenges throughout his life. Our film looks at his journey to the Oval Office, the ambition that propelled him there, and how he navigated one of the most pivotal eras in American history.”
JFK, presented by AMERICAN EXPERIENCE, is part of a series of specials airing in November to commemorate the 50th anniversary of President John F. Kennedy’s death. This collection provides viewers with a comprehensive slate of programs that deliver fresh, unbiased perspectives on a defining historical moment of the 20th century. This programming is part of an ongoing collaboration among PBS documentary, science, news and public affairs programs to bring audiences trustworthy, factual content tied to relevant national conversations.
Complete information on AMERICAN EXPERIENCE’s The Presidents can be found at http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/americanexperience/collections/presidents/.
About WQED Pittsburgh
WQED Pittsburgh has a proud history of honors, including 134 National and Mid-Atlantic Emmy® Awards, an Academy Award, and many, many others, including two Emmy® Awards for Station Excellence. WQED was founded in 1954 as the nation’s first community-supported broadcaster. WQED changes lives by creating and sharing outstanding public media that educates, entertains and inspires. It is the parent company of WQED-TV (PBS); WQED: The Neighborhood Channel; WQED: The Create Channel; WQED Showcase; Classical WQED-FM 89.3/Pittsburgh; Classical WQEJ-FM 89.7/Johnstown; the Pittsburgh Concert Channel at WQED-HD2 (89.3-2FM) and online at www.wqedfm.org; local and national television and radio productions; WQED Interactive (www.wqed.org) and iQ: smartmedia, WQED’s Educational initiative (www.wqed.org/edu).
About AMERICAN EXPERIENCE
For 25 years, AMERICAN EXPERIENCE has been television’s most-watched history series. It has been hailed as “peerless” (Wall Street Journal), “the most consistently enriching program on television” (Chicago Tribune), and “a beacon of intelligence and purpose” (Houston Chronicle). On air and online, the series brings to life the incredible characters and epic stories that have shaped America’s past and present. Acclaimed by viewers and critics alike, AMERICAN EXPERIENCE documentaries have been honored with every major broadcast award, including 30 Emmy Awards, four duPont-Columbia Awards, and 16 George Foster Peabody Awards, one most recently for three films representing the series’ body of work: Freedom Riders, Triangle Fire, and Stonewall Uprising.
Exclusive corporate funding for AMERICAN EXPERIENCE is provided by Liberty Mutual Insurance. Major funding provided by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and Public Television Viewers. AMERICAN EXPERIENCE is produced for PBS by WGBH Boston.
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