American Masters Pictures Films to World Premiere at Sundance
Three AMERICAN MASTERS Pictures documentaries will have their world premiere at Sundance Film Festival 2019, which runs from January 24 - February 3: Miles Davis: Birth of the Cool, N. Scott Momaday: Words from a Bear and Toni Morrison: The Pieces I Am.
All three documentaries will have their exclusive U.S. broadcast premieres on AMERICAN MASTERS at a later date on PBS.
"This is an extraordinary recognition of American Masters' depth and breadth and quality," said Stephen Segaller, Vice President of Programming at WNET, whose THIRTEEN unit produces AMERICAN MASTERS for PBS. "We are privileged to tell the stories of some of America's most important cultural icons, including the upcoming Davis, Momaday and Morrison films."
"At American Masters, we put our TRUST in the independent filmmaker," said Michael Kantor, Executive Producer, American Masters. "Stanley Nelson, Jeffrey Palmer and Timothy Greenfield-Sanders are masters of their craft, and bring unique talents and perspectives to the stories of these talented, influential Americans icons. We are ecstatic that these films will premiere at Sundance and be seen in theaters across the country and around the world."
Miles Davis: Birth of the Cool is the definitive account of the man behind the legend. With full access to the Miles Davis Estate, the film features never-before-seen footage, including studio outtakes from Miles Davis' recording sessions, rare photos and new interviews. Quincy Jones, Carlos Santana, Clive Davis, Wayne Shorter and Ron Carter are just a few of the luminaries weighing in on the life and career of Miles Davis, a true visionary, innovator and originator. Directed by Emmy Award-winner Stanley Nelson (Tell Them We Are Rising: The Story of Black Colleges and Universities, The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution, Freedom Riders for American Experience), Miles Davis: Birth of the Cool is a co-production of Eagle Rock Entertainment, Firelight Films, andAmerican Masters Pictures.
N. Scott Momaday: Words from a Bear examines the enigmatic life and mind of Pulitzer Prize-winning author Navarro Scott Momaday ("House Made of Dawn"). This documentary profile delves into the psyche behind one of Native America's most celebrated authors of poetry and prose. Words from a Bear visually captures the essence of Momaday's writings, relating each written line to his unique Kiowa-American experience, representing ancestry, place and oral history. Original animation, historical photos and aerial landscapes complement interviews with indigenous authors Simon Ortiz and Joy Harjo; actors Robert Redford, Jeff Bridges, Beau Bridges and James Earl Jones; and Richard West, founding director of the Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian, to reveal Momaday's creative core. Words from a Bear is produced by Jeffrey Palmer for Rainy Mountain Media LLC, and executive produced by Sally Jo Fifer for ITVS, Shirley K. Sneve for Vision Maker Media, and Michael Kantor forAmerican Masters Pictures.
?Toni Morrison: The Pieces I Am is an artful and intimate meditation on the legendary storyteller that examines her life, her works and the powerful themes she has confronted throughout her literary career. Toni Morrison, author of 11 novels and recipient of the 1988 Pulitzer Prize and the American Book Award for her novel, "Beloved," as well as the 1993 Nobel Prize for Literature, among many other honors, leads an assembly of her peers, critics and colleagues on an exploration of race, history, America and the human condition. Directed by Timothy Greenfield-Sanders (American Masters: The Women's List, American Masters: The Boomer List, AMERICAN MASTERS - Lou Reed: Rock and Roll Heart).
Founded in 2016 by executive producer Michael Kantor, AMERICAN MASTERS Pictures is WNET's theatrical imprint for documentaries co-produced by American Masters, the award-winning PBS BIOGRAPHY series that celebrates our arts and culture. AMERICAN MASTERS Pictures partners with filmmakers, distributors and sales agents on non-broadcast releases including film festivals, theatrical, online, DVD, VOD and OTT, with PBS as the exclusive U.S. broadcaster of all films as part of theAmerican Masters series. Films include Miles Davis: Birth of the Cool, N. Scott Momaday: Words from a Bear, Toni Morrison: The Pieces I Am, Sammy Davis, Jr.: I've Gotta Be Me, Bombshell: The Hedy Lamarr Story, Itzhak, Norman Lear: Just Another Version of You, Maya Angelou: And Still I RISE andGarry Winogrand: All Things are Photographable. Since 1986, AMERICAN MASTERS has set the standard for documentary film profiles, accruing widespread critical acclaim: 28 Emmy Awards - including 10 for Outstanding Non-Fiction Series and five for Outstanding Non-Fiction Special - 13 Peabodys, an Oscar, three Grammys, two Producers Guild Awards and many other honors. The series is a production of THIRTEEN PRODUCTIONS LLC for WNET.