TCA 2018: PBS Sets Woodstock, Civil War Documentaries

Complete Coverage: TCA 2108 Summer Press Tour 

PBS will develop several new documentaries on a variety of topics, including Woodstock and the Civil War, the company announced Monday (July 30) during its Television Critics Association summer press tour session. 

PBS' American Experience will team with Barak Goodman to develop Woodstock, a two-hour documentary that will air in 2019 in conjunction with the 50th anniversary of the historic three-day concert.

The documentary will examine the tumultuous decade that led to the concert through the voices of those who were present for the event, according to company officials.

PBS will also develop Reconstruction: America After The Civil War, a four-hour documentary executive produced and hosted by Henry Louis Gates Jr. Airing in spring 2019, the documentary will take a broad view of the Reconstruction era and its aftermath, beginning with the hopeful moment of war’s end and emancipation in 1865 and extending through 1915 and Jim Crow segregation, according to the network.

PBS will team with Ken Burns and Goodman on a new three-hour documentary, The Gene: An Intimate History, that will air in spring 2020. The documentary, inspired by Siddhartha Mukherjee’s best selling book The Gene: An Intimate History, will use science, social history and personal stories to weave together a historical biography of the human genome while also exploring the breakthroughs in understanding the impact genes play on heredity, disease and behavior, the company said. 

R. Thomas Umstead

R. Thomas Umstead serves as senior content producer, programming for Multichannel News, Broadcasting + Cable and Next TV. During his more than 30-year career as a print and online journalist, Umstead has written articles on a variety of subjects ranging from TV technology, marketing and sports production to content distribution and development. He has provided expert commentary on television issues and trends for such TV, print, radio and streaming outlets as Fox News, CNBC, the Today show, USA Today, The New York Times and National Public Radio. Umstead has also filmed, produced and edited more than 100 original video interviews, profiles and news reports featuring key cable television executives as well as entertainers and celebrity personalities.