WEDU Presents Film on Modern American Women Makers: Women Who Make America on February 26, 2013
TAMPA, FL (February 24, 2013) — MAKERS: WOMEN WHO MAKE AMERICA, a new documentary produced by Kunhardt McGee Productions, Storyville Films and WETA Washington, D.C., in association with Ark Media, will air Tuesday, February 26, 2013, at 8:00 p.m. ET on WEDU, West Central Florida’s leading PBS station. The film tells the story of how women have helped shape America over the last 50 years through one of the most sweeping social revolutions in our country’s history, in pursuit of their rights to a full and fair share of political power, economic opportunity and personal autonomy. A preview of the documentary is available at pbs.org/MAKERS.
MAKERS: WOMEN WHO MAKE AMERICA chronicles unforgettable moments in history and builds on the unprecedented multi-platform video experience from PBS and AOL, MAKERS.com, which launched in February 2012. Leveraging the combined reach of television and the internet, the project shares the stories of exceptional women whose pioneering contributions continue to shape the world in which we live and the film will continue to chronicle the stories of women who led the fight, those who opposed it, and those — both famous and unknown — who were caught in its wake. MAKERS is proudly brought to you by Simple® facial skincare brand by Unilever.
“The Women’s Movement, broadly defined, impacted every aspect of American life,” said filmmaker Dyllan McGee, the founder of MAKERS. “It is a very moving, dramatic, and often funny story that we have produced in a way that will appeal not only to women, but to men as well — we want it to be ‘must see TV’ for the whole family.”
Narrated by three-time Academy Award-winning actress Meryl Streep, MAKERS: WOMEN WHO MAKE AMERICA takes its cue from the movement’s motto, “The personal is political,” delving into the personal lives of its subjects. The film is built from first-person, intimate accounts of women who experienced this time of change, including movement leaders such as author and feminist activist Gloria Steinem and Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton; opponents such as conservative activist Phyllis Schlafly; celebrities including media leader Oprah Winfrey and journalist Katie Couric; political figures such as U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton; business leaders such as Linda Alvarado, president and CEO of Alvarado Construction, Inc., and a co-owner of The Colorado Rockies; and many “ordinary” women who confronted the dramatic social upheaval in their own lives.
“By spotlighting some of the most remarkable women in our nation’s modern history, MAKERS: WOMEN WHO MAKE AMERICA will tell the comprehensive story of how women have advanced in our country during the last half century. We know the documentary will educate and enlighten, but we hope it will also inspire viewers to make positive changes in their own communities,” said Paula A. Kerger, President and CEO of PBS. “PBS and our member stations are proud to support this celebration and dialogue about the role of women in our society.”
Through the perspectives of those who lived through historic milestones, MAKERS: WOMEN WHO MAKE AMERICA will recount the seminal events in the Women’s Movement, including the publication of The Feminine Mystique in 1963, the battles to end discriminatory laws and practices over the following decade, and Anita Hill’s testimony against Clarence Thomas before the
Senate Judiciary Committee in 1991. It will also go much further, telling the surprising and unknown stories of women who broke barriers in their own chosen fields — from the coal mines of West Virginia to the boardrooms of Madison Avenue. And it will take the story to today, when a new generation is both defending and questioning the legacy of their mothers.
“I’m so happy that we’re finally hearing the stories and voices of women who make America,” said Gloria Steinem, one of the project’s advisors and featured subjects. “We do what we see, not what we’re told, so an incomplete story of this country damages everyone. MAKERS will not only change our picture of the present, but release talent for the future.”
The broadcast of MAKERS: WOMEN WHO MAKE AMERICA comes on the heels of the launch of MAKERS.com early in 2012. This landmark multiplatform video experience from PBS and AOL aims to become the largest and most dynamic collection of women’s stories ever assembled. The AOL-developed interactive video platform has become a source of inspiration for millions of people, with more than 32.5 million video views to date.
“Our innovative approach to MAKERS.com has enabled us to inspire millions of people with thousands of MAKERS videos showcasing groundbreaking, trailblazing and diverse women who have made an indelible impact on our world today,” said Maureen Sullivan, SVP and General Manager, Women’s Content and Lifestyle Brands at AOL. “MAKERS.com will continue to chronicle the achievements of women everywhere through a growing collection of stories, expanding the reach of the MAKERS platform, and continuing this important dialogue.”
“Simple® facial skincare brand is very proud to support MAKERS, which celebrates women whose authenticity, ideals and pioneering spirit inspire others every day,” said Alison Clark, Director, Unilever US, Skincare. “Simple® inspires women to be their best too through its holistic approach to skincare. The Simple® philosophy is not just about products but encompasses all of the lifestyle choices impacting healthy-looking skin. Just like MAKERS, we are about nurturing women’s physical and emotional selves.”
In addition to the digital video platform and broadcast initiative, AOL and PBS will utilize their broad-reaching community networks to draw the American public into an ongoing conversation about MAKERS and how women transform all aspects of our country and our world today. This outreach will include major partnerships with local PBS stations and groups that empower women and girls.
The project is founded by Dyllan McGee, who serves as executive producer along with filmmakers Betsy West and Peter Kunhardt. Producers are Barak Goodman and Pamela Mason Wagner. Dalton Delan is executive producer for WETA. The documentary is produced by Kunhardt McGee Productions, Storyville Films and WETA Washington, DC, in association with Ark Media. Major funding is provided by Unilever and its Simple® skincare brand. Additional funding is provided by The Charles H. Revson Foundation, NoVo Foundation, Ford Foundation, John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, Carnegie Corporation of New York, The Rice Family Foundation, The Rockefeller Foundation and others.
Visit MAKERS.com to access more than 1,000 videos of remarkable stories of groundbreaking women. For more information, visit MAKERS.com/press and pbs.org/MAKERS, follow @MAKERSwomen on Twitter and visit Facebook.com/makerswomen on Facebook.
About PBS and WETA Washington, D.C.
PBS, with its nearly 360 member stations, offers all Americans the opportunity to explore new ideas and new worlds through television and online content. Each month, PBS reaches nearly 123 million people through television and more than 21 million people online, inviting them to experience the worlds of science, history, nature and public affairs; hear diverse viewpoints; and take front-row seats to world-class drama and performances. Teachers of children from pre-K through 12th grade turn to PBS for digital content and services that help bring classroom lessons to life. More information about PBS is available at www.pbs.org.
WETA Washington, DC, is the third-largest producing station for public television. Other WETA productions and co-productions include PBS NEWSHOUR, WASHINGTON WEEK WITH GWEN IFILL, THE KENNEDY CENTER MARK TWAIN PRIZE and documentaries by filmmaker Ken Burns, including the premiere in November of THE DUST BOWL. Sharon Percy Rockefeller is president and CEO of WETA. More information on WETA and its programs and services is available at www.weta.org.
About AOL Inc.
AOL Inc. (NYSE:AOL) is a brand company committed to continuously innovating, growing and investing in brands and experiences that inform, entertain and connect the world. The home of a world-class collection of premium brands, AOL creates original content that engages audiences on a local and global scale. We help marketers connect with these audiences through effective and engaging digital advertising solutions.
About the Filmmakers
Executive Producers are Dyllan McGee, Peter Kunhardt and Betsy West.
Kunhardt and McGee are partners in the Emmy Award-winning documentary company Kunhardt McGee Productions. Working with PBS, HBO, and all the major networks, Kunhardt McGee’s documentary films capture the people and the ideas that have shaped our history. Recent Kunhardt McGee projects include “Finding Your Roots” (PBS), “Gloria: In Her Own Words” (HBO), “Teddy: In His Own Words” (HBO); “Faces of America with Henry Louis Gates, Jr.” (PBS); “This Emotional Life” (PBS); and “African American Lives 1 and 2” (PBS). More information is available at www.kunhardtmcgee.com.
Betsy West, a veteran of ABC and CBS News and currently an associate professor at the Columbia Journalism School, has more than 25 years of experience in television news and documentary films. Her senior roles at “Turning Point” (ABC), “Nightline” (ABC), “60 Minutes” (CBS), “48 Hours,” and “9/11” (CBS) have earned her 22 Emmy Awards and two duPont-Columbia Awards. Joining Storyville Films in 2006, she co-produced the feature documentary “Constantine’s Sword” and is executive producer of “The Lavender Scare,” currently in production. More information is available at www.storyville.org.
The Producer/Director is Barak Goodman. Goodman is a co-founder of Ark Media, an independent documentary film production company located in Brooklyn, NY, that produces historical, cultural and public affairs documentaries. In recent years, Ark Media has been nominated for an Academy Award and won a National Emmy, a duPont-Columbia, an RFK Journalism, a George Foster Peabody, and a Writers Guild Award. More information is available at www.ark-media.net.
Download the full press release at www.wedu.org/press.