Project Category: Civil Rights

The Selma to Montgomery march was a turning point of the Civil Rights campaign for equal justice in American. The march was part of a series of protests occurring throughout the South in 1965. The 54-mile route from Selma to the state Capitol took three attempts and early efforts were marred by violence before eventual federal government intervention allowed the march to proceed. The story is told through re-enactments and previously unseen film taken by undercover Alabama State police. John Lewis, James Farmer, James Orange, CT Vivian and Nicholas Katzenbach look back on the events leading up to Bloody Sunday and describe how President Lyndon B. Johnson responded.
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This series, commissioned by the BBC’s former Director General Lord Tony Hall, traces Sir Charles Wheeler’s reporting from America that began at the height of the Vietnam war and extended well into the Reagan presidency. The five-part, Grierson nominated series examines Nixon’s treason that resulted in a stolen election in 1968, Johnson’s failed efforts to create a “Great Society”, the Vietnam War, America’s defeat in its war on drugs, and Reagan’s reliance on the advice of a San Francisco astrologer. 
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Operation Zorro was the campaign undertaken by the FBI to monitor and destroy MLK. After the March on Washington, the head of Division Five, the FBI section responsible for mounting surveillance on “domestic terrorists” reported to Hoover that King was “by far the most dangerous man in America.” A recently declassified internal surveillance investigation, conducted in 1976 by the Church and Pike Committees exposed the campaign to destroy King. As outlined in a Brookings Institute essay about the committee findings “Their hearings exposed secret, arguably illegal wiretapping, bugging, and harassment of American citizens, including Supreme Court justices, reporters, and government officials, all in the name of collecting intelligence about threats to national security. The most notorious case, first exposed in the 1960s and fully documented by the Church Committee, was the wiretapping of Martin Luther King, Jr. by the NSA and by the FBI under J. Edgar Hoover, who believed him to be part of a Communist conspiracy.”
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A film that captures the drama of King’s final year. From his speech at Riverside Church in New York where he came out against the Vietnam War to his dream of leading a Poor People’s March from Mississippi to Washington DC. We place the legacy in the context of the state of race relations in America today. Visiting a homeless shelter in King’s birthplace in Atlanta, the projects in South Central LA - site of the 1964 Watts riots, and finally to the town of Marks Mississippi which became the starting point for King’s final campaign. Civil Rights leaders such as Joseph Lowry, John Lewis and Andrew Young reflect on King’s life but also the far more radical final message that demanded both racial and economic justice.
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