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27 Apr 2014

‘Breaking Barriers’ traces history of people of color on American TV (Part of PBS’ ‘Pioneers Of Television’ 4/29)

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April 27, 2014 Category: Entertainment Posted by:

ABOVE PHOTO:  Diahann Carroll and Marc Copage in the 1960’s sitcom, ‘Julia.’

 

By Tambay A. Obenson

shadow and act.com

In the upcoming fourth season of the Emmy-nominated series, “Pioneers Of Television,” PBS will explore trailblazing moments of TV history, featuring a lineup that includes an episode titled “Breaking Barriers,” which airs on Tuesday, April 29, 2014, at 8pm ET, and which will trace the history of people of color on American television, featuring the mid-1960s breakthroughs of African Americans Diahann Carroll (“Julia”) and Bill Cosby (“I Spy”), as well as Latino landmarks, ranging from “I Love Lucy” with Desi Arnaz, to “Miami Vice” with Edward James Olmos. Also featured are Asian Americans such as “George Takei” (Star Trek), who details the childhood years he spent in a Japanese-American internment camp.

Offering inside stories from some of America’s most beloved television stars, expect new interviews with legendary stars, such as Jimmie Walker, Leslie Uggams, Ray Romano, Bob Newhart, Robin Williams, Roseanne Barr and Dick Van Dyke, with never-before-seen images and footage. 

“We are thrilled to bring another season of ‘Pioneers of Television’ to PBS,” said executive producer Steve Boettcher, who, along with producing partner Mike Trinklein, has helmed numerous specials and series on television’s breakthrough performers. “From stars that had Americans howling with laughter in front of their television screens, to the ones who broke barriers — and maybe even some who saved lives — this season’s line-up features legends who paved the way for contemporary television.”

“The fourth season of ‘Pioneers of Television’ continues the series’ winning formula of bringing television’s most well-known stars and their lesser-known stories to PBS,” says Donald Thoms, PBS Vice President of General Audience Programming. “The show does a masterful job of serving us the history of the medium while telling us the backstage tales of America’s favorite shows.”

ACTING FUNNY

Tuesday, May 6, 2014,  8:00-9:00 PM ET

This episode peeks behind the curtain to reveal the techniques of America’s favorite comedic actors. The program features the manic improvisational style of Robin Williams and his comic predecessor, Jonathan Winters. Their style is a fascinating contrast to Tina Fey, who explains her measured, highly prepared approach. The episode also highlights the all-time Emmy Award winner for comedic acting: Cloris Leachman.

BREAKING BARRIERS

Tuesday, May 6, 2014, 8:00-9:00 PM ET

This episode traces the story of people of color on American television — including the mid-1960s breakthroughs of African Americans Diahann Carroll (“Julia”) and Bill Cosby(“I Spy”). Latino landmarks range from “I Love Lucy” with Desi Arnaz to “Miami Vice” with Edward James Olmos. Also featured are Asian Americans such as George Takei (“Star Trek”), who details the childhood years he spent in a Japanese-American internment camp.

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