AMERICAN MASTERS: EDWARD R. MURROW: THIS REPORTER {PART 1 OF 2} (TV)

Summary

One in this documentary series that explores the lives and achievements of America's most celebrated native-born and adopted artists, performers, and creative talent. Part one in this two-part program profiling the career of pioneering broadcast journalist Edward R. Murrow. Included are interviews with Murrow's family, friends, and fellow news professionals; clips of radio and television news programs; and archival footage accompanied by narration. The program begins with an outline of Murrow's entry into the world of radio journalism, including the following details: Howard K. Smith, Charles Kuralt, and Eric Sevareid of CBS News discuss Murrow's unique style of writing and speaking; the documentary outlines the circumstances that led to his first position as a foreign correspondent; and Richard C. Hottelet of CBS News recalls the team of correspondents that Murrow assembled to cover World War II, as well as Murrow's approach to hiring reporters. Next comes a discussion of the European war reporting for which Murrow is famous: His widow, Janet Murrow, speaks about her early years with her husband, including their precarious existence in London during World War II; Edward Bliss, Jr., of CBS News comments on the daredevil side of Murrow's character, which allowed him to thrive under the dangerous circumstances of war; and Bill Shadel of CBS News remembers the intense experience he and Murrow shared while covering the liberation of the Buchenwald concentration camp. Larry Le Sueur describes the difficulty that war correspondents had in readjusting to civilian life. On the correspondent's return to the U.S., CBS founder and chair Williams S. Paley briefly enlisted Murrow as the CBS vice president of news, the documentary explains. With the birth of television, however, Murrow soon became involved with producer Fred W. Friendly on the innovative program "See It Now." A discussion of "See It Now" follows. Don Hewitt and Mili Lerner Bonsignori, "See It Now" studio director and film editor, explain that Friendly and Murrow were unfamiliar with the new medium of television and produced much of their groundbreaking work by experiment or trial and error; Joseph Weshba and Palmer Williams, "See It Now" field producer and production manager, talk about the daily workings of the program, as well as Murrow's human approach to the news; Murrow's coverage of the flooding of the Missouri River and of the Korean War are noted as examples of the high quality of his journalism; Sig Mickelson, CBS chief executive of news and public affairs, describes some of the conflicts between the team of "See It Now" and the network's management; and Friendly discusses the frightening effects of McCarthyism and the significance of the edition of "See It Now" that examined the case of Air Force Lieutenant Milo Radulovich. The program concludes with a suggestion of the problems that lay ahead for Murrow concerning coverage of the McCarthy blacklisting. Continues with T:57501.

Cataloging of this program was made possible by Rosalind P. Walter, 1999.

Details

  • NETWORK: PBS WNET New York, NY
  • DATE: July 30, 1990 Monday 9:00 PM
  • RUNNING TIME: 0:57:45
  • COLOR/B&W: Color
  • CATALOG ID: T:57500
  • GENRE: Public Affairs/Documentaries
  • SUBJECT HEADING: Biography
  • SERIES RUN: PBS - TV series, 1986-
  • COMMERCIALS:

CREDITS

    • For "American Masters":
    • Susan Lacy … Executive Producer
    • Harlene Freezer … Senior Producer
    • Diane Dufault … Producer
    • Jac Venza … Direction (Misc.), Executive Director
    • Jonathan Tunick … Theme Music by
    • For "Edward R. Murrow: This Reporter":
    • Susan Lacy … Executive Producer
    • Susan Steinberg … Producer, Director
    • Libby Kreutz … Co-Producer
    • Harlene Freezer … Co-Producer
    • Ed Apfel … Writer
    • Joy Conley … Researcher
    • Joy Birdsong … Researcher
    • David Batty … Researcher
    • Edward Bliss
    • Mili Lerner Bonsignori
    • Fred W. Friendly
    • Don Hewitt
    • Richard C. Hottelet
    • Charles Kuralt
    • Le Sueur, Larry
    • Joseph McCarthy
    • Sig Mickelson
    • Edward R. Murrow
    • Janet Murrow
    • William S. Paley
    • Milo Radulovich
    • Eric Sevareid
    • Bill Shadel
    • Howard K. Smith
    • Joseph Weshba
    • Palmer Williams