CPB Funds Ken Burns Through 2017

Corporation for Public Broadcasting to Fund PBS' Best-Known Documentary Producer 3/13/2008 03:19:00 AM Eastern

The U.S. government may be having financial troubles, with the weakening dollar and talk of recession, but there is one investment it appears confident in: Ken Burns.

Ken Burns

The Corporation for Public Broadcasting, which disburses the federal government's financial support of public broadcasting, struck a 10-year deal to fund the projects of the best-known documentary producer in PBS and, perhaps U.S. history -- "history" being the operative word given the acclaim for his documentaries on the Civil War and, more recently, World War II.

It also agreed to fund three documentaries on the African-American experience from one of its leading scholars.

The Burns agreement runs through 2017 and includes money for development and production of projects under consideration, which include an update of Burns' Baseball documentary, a series on prohibition, biographies of the two Roosevelt presidents and one on the Vietnam war.

CPB also announced funding for three documentaries from Harvard professor and African-American studies expert Henry Louis “Skip” Gates Jr., The Faces of America, Searching for Our Roots: The History of the African American People and African American Lives III: Reclaiming Our Past. They are expected to premiere in 2010, 2011 and 2012, respectively.

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