Today PBS unveiled its winter/spring 2017 lineup of projects, which just so happens to include a documentary on The Birth of a Nation.
The documentary, titled Birth of a Movement, will explore the technically groundbreaking but racially controversial and problematic The Birth of a Nation through African American newspaper editor and activist William M. Trotter, who waged a war against the movie.
By challenging D.W. Griffith‘s infamously pro-Ku Klux Klan blockbuster film, Trotter launched what would inevitably become a nationwide movement that sought to denounce the work.
Birth of a Movement will feature contributions from the likes of Spike Lee; Reginald Hudlin; Henry Louis Gates, Jr.; and DJ Spooky (who created a new score and remix of the original Griffith film). Numerous clips from The Birth of a Nation will also be displayed throughout the documentary. The documentary promises to be a revelation for cinephiles, history buffs and anyone interested in America’s tumultuous racial evolution.
PBS has had a hand in the release of some notable projects centered around black American history, including the recently released Black America Since MLK: And Still I Rise. The two part, four hour series is hosted by Gates, as he explores the past, present and future of black America.
“How has the black community changed since the Civil Rights Movement? Since MLK died? How would you describe the tremendous progress we have made, but also the enormous challenges that far too many of us still face? How could this be the best of times and the worst of times for Black America? These are the questions that this series explores,” Gates said in a statement for Black America Since MLK. “We are at a crucial point in history, and with this series, I hoped to reflect on our recent past as a way of helping to devise ways to forge a better future.”
Part one of the series is available to watch online. Birth of a Movement is set to premiere on Monday, February 6, 2017, at 10 p.m. ET. The documentary is spearheaded by producer-directors Susan Gray and Bestor Cram.