History targets April date for “Kennedys” in UK, Canada

History channels in Canada and the UK have both set air dates for The Kennedys, following U.S. network ReelzChannel's acquisition of the controversial docu-drama yesterday.
February 2, 2011

History channels in Canada and the UK have both set air dates for The Kennedys, following U.S. network ReelzChannel’s acquisition of the controversial docu-drama yesterday.

History Canada will premiere the miniseries as a four-part movie event from April 10 at 9 p.m., while History UK, a joint venture net between AETN and BSkyB, will air it on a yet to be decided date in April.

Barb Williams, Shaw Media’s senior VP of content, said the series would be an “outstanding historical drama,” while AETN UK MD Tom Davidson said it was a “bold and epic account of the Kennedy dynasty.”

The drama promises to relive “the public and private joys and tragedies” of America’s most famous political family, including “the fraternal rivalries, the mob associations, the drugs and the women.”

The Kennedys has already generated a considerable amount of controversy, most recently when History in the U.S. last month announced it was dropping the show – which was supposed to represent its first major move into historical scripted drama – despite it being fully finished and delivered.

A number of U.S. networks, including Showtime, screened the series following History’s decision, and cablenet ReelzChannel yesterday put pen to paper to take on the show. The Kennedys kicks off in 1960 with JFK’s election, and goes on to chronicle the early days of his presidency, including the Bay of Pigs invasion, the Cuban Missile Crisis and the Civil Rights Movement.

Michael Prupas, Muse Entertainment’s president and CEO, said the program had been “a labor of love and commitment.” He added: “Anyone who watches the show will agree that the Kennedy family emerges from our treatment as a great American family, who made a great contribution to the world and to their country, but were beset by epic tragedies.”

About The Author
Senior staff writer Frederick Blichert comes to realscreen with a background as a journalist and freelance film critic. He has previously written for VICE, Paste Magazine, Senses of Cinema, Xtra, Canadian Cinematographer and elsewhere. He holds a Master of Arts in film studies from Carleton University and a Master of Journalism from the University of British Columbia.