The Roosevelts Meet The Underwoods: A Conversation Between Ken Burns and Beau Willimon

May 20, 2014
7:30 PM
New York

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Ken Burns, esteemed chronicler of American history for PBS, and Beau Willimon, creator of Netflix’s groundbreaking House of Cards, have investigated in their respective genres how government really works. Tonight the documentarian and the showrunner will examine how historical and fictional portraits of government have shaped the public’s impressions of politics and leadership. They will specifically compare the strategies and aspirations of two political forces: The Roosevelt dynasty, the subject of Burns’s upcoming series for PBS, and the Underwoods, the Machiavellian couple from Willimon’s series. Dissecting clips of the Roosevelts and Underwoods in action, Burns and Willimon will comment on the role of government and the nature of political compromise, as well as how leaders grapple with their own strengths and weaknesses.

This program is made possible, in part, by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature. 

Roosevelts photo credit: Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library
House of Cards photo credit: Nathaniel Bell for Netflix


Ken Burns
Beau Willimon
Moderator: Amy Chozick, National Political Reporter, The New York Times


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