SMITHSONIAN CHANNEL™ RECOUNTS MAJOR NEWS EVENTS
WITH RARE NEWS FOOTAGE IN NEW SERIES
THE LOST TAPES
FIRST EPISODE MARKS 75TH ANNIVERSARY OF PEARL HARBOR,
PREMIERING DECEMBER 4th AT 9 PM ET/PT
Episodes On L.A. Riots, Son of Sam Killings, and
Patty Hearst Kidnapping To Air in 2017
NEW YORK – November 3, 2016 – They were all major events that would leave a lasting imprint on America, and their narratives were shaped by the news coverage they received. With no narration or interviews, relying entirely on radio reports, television footage, rarely seen photographs, and other media, a new Smithsonian Channel series, THE LOST TAPES, will dive deeper into these gripping events, recapturing moments as they happened, raw and unfiltered. The first installment, THE LOST TAPES: PEARL HARBOR, will premiere Sunday, December 4 at 9 p.m. ET/PT, to coincide with the 75th anniversary of the attacks that brought the U.S. into World War II.
“This is TV at its most raw, its most visceral” said David Royle, Executive Vice President of Programming and Production, Smithsonian Channel. “It’s a unique approach. It plunges us into the midst of events, lets us witness the drama unfolding as if we were there at the time, and allows us to make up our own minds. It only uses contemporary reports and images and has an immediacy that is always fascinating and sometimes shocking.”
THE LOST TAPES: PEARL HARBOR offers a detailed account of December 7, 1941, taken straight from original sources. Radio reports, film footage, audiotape, photos, wire dispatches and first-person accounts create a riveting, moment-by-moment experience of the “Day of Infamy.” Some of the primary media sources used in THE LOST TAPES: PEARL HARBOR have not been seen or heard in over 70 years.
The production team scoured archives from around the world in search of unseen and unknown film and radio reports of the Pearl Harbor attack and its aftermath. Among the startling finds is the only known live report of the bombing as it was happening, from a local radio reporter calling into NBC who was standing on the roof of a publishing company in Honolulu. Shocked by what he saw, he felt compelled to add, “It is no joke. This is a real war.” The first official response from the White House didn’t come from President Franklin D. Roosevelt, but from his wife, Eleanor, who assured her country, “We know what we have to face, and we know that we are ready to face it.”
The LOST TAPES series allows viewers to experience the hours and days immediately surrounding the Pearl Harbor attack as if it was 1941 all over again and from a perspective not seen or heard by even those who followed the news coverage at the time.
Ensuing episodes of THE LOST TAPES will air in 2017 timed to their anniversaries: The Los Angeles riots of April, 1992 that followed the acquittal of four officers charged with using excessive force on stranded motorist Rodney King, the capture of the Son of Sam serial killer in New York City in August, 1977, and the kidnapping of Patty Hearst by the domestic terrorist group the Symbionese Liberation Army, which ended in her arrest in September 1975.
THE LOST TAPES series is produced by Tom Jennings of 1895 Films, the same team behind the Peabody Award-winning MLK: THE ASSASSINATION TAPES. Executive producers for Smithsonian Channel are David Royle and Charles Poe.
Smithsonian Channel™, owned by Smithsonian Networks™, a joint venture between Showtime Networks Inc. and the Smithsonian Institution, is where curiosity lives, inspiration strikes and wonders never cease. This is the place for awe-inspiring stories, powerful documentaries and amazing entertainment across multiple platforms. Smithsonian Channel combines the storytelling prowess of SHOWTIME® with the unmatched resources and rich traditions of the Smithsonian, to create award-winning programming that shines new light on popular genres such as air and space, history, science, nature, and pop culture. Among the network’s offerings are series including Aerial America, Million Dollar American Princesses, The Weapon Hunter, Mighty Ships, Mighty Planes and Air Disasters, as well as critically-acclaimed specials that include Civil War 360, 9/11: The Heartland Tapes; MLK: The Assassination Tapes and The Day Kennedy Died. Smithsonian Networks also operates Smithsonian Earth™, through SN Digital LLC., a new subscription video streaming service delivering spectacular original nature and wildlife content. To learn more, go to www.smithsonianchannel.com, or connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.