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Wednesday, December 10, 2014
Video: unreleased Bing Crosby song roasting Hollywood director; 12/26 PBS encore
A national holiday encore of American Masters: Bing Crosby Rediscovered airs Friday, December 26 at 9 p.m. (ET/PT) on PBS (check local listings) and the film will stream on the American Masters website (pbs.org/americanmasters) beginning at 11:59 p.m.ET that night.
The DVD and companion soundtrack CD are available now.
THIRTEEN's American Masters Series Produces
New Documentary Bing Crosby Rediscovered,
Featuring Unprecedented Access to Crosby's Archives
Premieres nationwide Tuesday, December 2 on PBS and DVD
Crosby (May 3, 1903-October 14, 1977) was, without doubt, the most
popular and influential multimedia star of the first half of the 20th
century. For more than three decades, through radio, film, television
and records, he reigned supreme.
The new documentary American Masters: Bing Crosby Rediscovered, premiering nationwide Tuesday, December 2 at 8 p.m. on PBS (check local listings) as the series' Season 28 finale,
explores the life and legend of this iconic performer, revealing a man
far more complex than his public persona. The film is available December
2 on DVD from PBS Distribution. A holiday encore presentation airs Friday, December 26 at 9 p.m. on PBS (check local listings).
Crosby's estate, HLC Properties, Ltd., granted American Masters
unprecedented access to the entertainer's personal and professional
archives, including never-before-seen home movies, Dictabelt recordings,
photos and more. Narrated by Stanley Tucci, the film features new
interviews with all surviving members of Crosby's immediate family:
wife Kathryn, daughter Mary and sons Harry and Nathaniel. The film
reveals Crosby's struggles with his first wife, Dixie Lee, and their
sons Gary, Dennis, Phillip and Lindsay. Mary addresses accusations of
abuse first published in Gary's 1983 memoir, which tarnished their
father's legacy. Gary speaks candidly about both his and his mother's
alcoholism as well as his difficulties with his father in a
never-before-seen 1987 interview. Other new interviews include singers Tony Bennett and Michael Feinstein, record producer Ken Barnes, biographer Gary
Giddins, and writers Buz Kohan and Larry Grossman, who both share the
story behind Crosby's Christmas special duet with David Bowie.
American Masters: Bing Crosby Rediscovered-- The Soundtrack
features songs heard in the documentary, including 16 previously
unreleased recordings, and is available November 24, 2014, via Bing
Crosby Archive and Universal Music Enterprises.
"I've never seen an entertainer more comfortable in his own skin, more certain of who he was," says Emmy-winning director Robert Trachtenberg, whose past films for American Masters include Mel Brooks: Make a Noise, On Cukor, Gene Kelly: Anatomy of a Dancer and Cary Grant: A Class Apart.
"With the new material I've found, I think the breadth, depth and
candor of his story will hopefully allow people to see him in a new
years after his death, Crosby remains the most recorded performer in
history with nearly 400 hit singles, an achievement no one - not Frank
Sinatra, Elvis Presley or the Beatles - has come close to matching. A
brilliant entrepreneur, Crosby played an important role in the
development of the postwar recording industry. As one of Hollywood's
most popular actors, he won the Oscar for 1944's Going My Way and starred in the iconic "Road" films with Bob Hope.
naturally think of Bing at Christmastime, but with more No. 1
recordings than anyone, it is easy to overlook all of his other
achievements. Thankfully, this film delves deeply into all of his
remarkable work, and will surprise many viewers with a unique
perspective on his private life," says Michael Kantor, executive
producer of American Masters.
Launched in 1986 by series creator Susan Lacy, American Masters
has earned 28 Emmy Awards -- including 10 for Outstanding Non-Fiction
Series since 1999 and five for Outstanding Non-Fiction Special -- 12
Peabodys, an Oscar, three Grammys, two Producers Guild Awards and many
other honors. Now in its 28th season on PBS, the series is a production
PRODUCTIONS LLC for WNET.
WNET is the parent company of THIRTEEN and WLIW21, New York's public
television stations, and operator of NJTV. For more than 50 years,
THIRTEEN has been a partner with the tri-state community, using its rich
resources to inform and inspire the passionate people of New York and
the world to better understand and address the issues that challenge our
To take American Masters
beyond the television broadcast and further explore the themes, stories
and personalities of masters past and present, the companion website (http://pbs.org/americanmasters
) offers streaming video of select films, interviews, photos, outtakes, essays and other resources. American Masters
is also seen on the WORLD channel, a 24/7, full-service multicast
channel featuring public television's signature nonfiction documentary,
science and news programming, broadcast in nearly two-thirds of the
American Masters: Bing Crosby Rediscovered is a production of THIRTEEN PRODUCTIONS LLC's American Masters for WNET. Robert
Trachtenberg is writer, director and producer. Gillian McCarthy is
editor. Junko Tsunashima is supervising producer. Julie Sacks is series
producer. Susan Lacy and Michael Kantor are executive producers.
American Masters is made possible by the National Endowment for the Arts, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, Rosalind
P. Walter, Anne Ray Charitable Trust, Cheryl and Philip Milstein
Family, The Blanche & Irving Laurie Foundation, Rolf and Elizabeth
Rosenthal, Jack Rudin, The André and Elizabeth Kertész Foundation,
Michael & Helen Schaffer Foundation and public television viewers.
As New York's flagship public media provider and the parent company of THIRTEEN
and WLIW21 and operator of NJTV,
WNET brings quality arts, education and public affairs programming to
more than 5 million viewers each week. WNET produces and presents such
acclaimed PBS series as Nature, Great Performances, American Masters, PBS NewsHour Weekend, Charlie Rose
and a range of documentaries, children's programs, and local news and
cultural offerings available on air and online. Pioneers in educational
programming, WNET has created such groundbreaking series as Get the Math, Oh Noah! and Cyberchase
and provides tools for educators that bring compelling content to life
in the classroom and at home. WNET highlights the tri-state's unique
culture and diverse communities through NYC-ARTS