American Masters: Season 22 (2008 - 2009)

SEASON:

Season 22
American Masters

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Episodes

Air date: Feb 27, 2008

The 21st-season opener profiles folksinger Peter Seeger, whom the Dixie Chicks' Natalie Maines calls a "living testament to the First Amendment." Spiced by archival photos and film, the bio features comments from Seeger, Maines, Bruce Springsteen and Bob Dylan, plus family members. Included: Seeger recalls Woody Guthrie; the Weavers and their blacklisting; Seeger's role in the 1960s folk-music revival, the civil-rights movement and anti-Vietnam War protests; and cleaning up the Hudson River.

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Air date: Apr 9, 2008

A profile of Zora Neale Hurston (1891-1960), author of such acclaimed works as "Their Eyes Were Watching God" and "Dust Tracks on a Road."

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Air date: May 7, 2008

A powerful profile of Marvin Gaye (1939-1984) that makes generous use of archival clips and a vintage Gaye interview to paint a picture of the talented, troubled man behind such classics as "I Heard It Through the Grapevine" and "What's Going On." Interviews include family members and ex-wife Jan Gaye, biographer David Ritz ("Divided Soul"), and Motown colleagues Lamont Dozier, Berry Gordy, Gladys Knight, Martha Reeves, Smokey Robinson, Kim Weston and Mary Wilson. Jesse L. Martin narrates.

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Air date: Sep 23, 2008

Clint Eastwood narrates the history of Warner Bros., which opens with "You Ain't Heard Nothin' Yet (1923-35)," about the studio's first years, when its biggest star was Rin Tin Tin. Also remembered is its move into gritty fare, featuring James Cagney, Edward G. Robinson and Barbara Stanwyck, and its musicals. Included: "The Jazz Singer," "Public Enemy," "42nd Street," "Baby Face" and "Little Caesar"; interviews with Busby Berkeley, Alfred Hitchcock, Robinson and William Wellman.

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Air date: Sep 23, 2008

"Good War, Uneasy Peace (1935-50)" focuses on how Warner Bros. responded to the Great Depression and World War II, when such stars as Humphrey Bogart, Bette Davis and Errol Flynn graced its pictures. Also: the post-war film noirs are explored. Included: "Casablanca," "Now, Voyager," "The Adventures of Robin Hood," "Kings Row" and "White Heat"; interviews with James Cagney, Howard Hawks, Ronald Reagan and Alexis Smith. Clint Eastwood narrates.

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Air date: Sep 24, 2008

"A New Reality (1950-70)" details how Warner Bros. fought back against TV with such innovations as CinemaScope and 3-D, as well as with such new stars as Doris Day and James Dean. Also: how a battle between Jack and Harry Warner changed the studio's direction. Included: "A Streetcar Named Desire," "East of Eden," "Cool Hand Luke," "A Face in the Crowd" and "My Fair Lady"; interviews with Warren Beatty, Elia Kazan, Kim Hunter, Arthur Penn and Carroll Baker. Clint Eastwood narrates.

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Air date: Sep 24, 2008

"Woodstock Notions (1970-89)" recalls the creative renaissance of Warner Bros. during the 1970s and '80s. Included: "Mean Streets," "The Exorcist," "Superman: The Movie," "The Shining" and "Body Heat"; interviews with Dustin Hoffman, Clint Eastwood, Jack Nicholson and Robert Redford. Eastwood narrates.

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Air date: Sep 25, 2008

"The Brothers Warner" profiles Albert, Sam, Harry and Jack L. Warner, who founded the Warner Bros. movie studio. Included: archival footage; family photos; and remarks from family members, film historians, Norman Lear, Roy E. Disney, Angie Dickinson, Dennis Hopper, Debbie Reynolds and George Segal. Cass Warner Sperling (Harry's granddaughter) narrates.

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Air date: Sep 25, 2008

"The Big Tent (1980-Present)" chronicles the success of Warner Bros. during the 1980s, '90s and 2000s, including Clint Eastwood's Oscar winners, "The Matrix" franchise and the Harry Potter films. Included: "The Color Purple," "Unforgiven," "Mystic River," "Michael Clayton" and "The Departed"; interviews with Tim Burton, George Clooney, Martin Scorsese and Steven Spielberg. Eastwood narrates.

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