Docs

PBS slates COVID-19 special “In This Together”, “Inside the Vatican”

PBS’s multi-platform storytelling project “American Portrait”, the signature content initiative of the pubcaster’s 50th anniversary, has scheduled a coronavirus special for early May. Produced by PBS and RadicalMedia, In This Together: A PBS ...
April 3, 2020

PBS’s multi-platform storytelling project “American Portrait”, the signature content initiative of the pubcaster’s 50th anniversary, has scheduled a coronavirus special for early May.

Produced by PBS and RadicalMedia, In This Together: A PBS American Portrait Story  

The 30-minute one-off special will spotlight a variety of personal stories, photographs, self-shot videos and text shared by the public from across the U.S. to share how the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak is impacting their lives and communities, and understanding of what it means to live in America during this uncertain time.

In This Together: A PBS American Portrait Story is executive produced by RadicalMedia’s Jon Kamen and Dave Sirulnick alongside director and EP Craig D’Entrone. Michéle Stephenson is series producer. 

In This Together: A PBS American Portrait Story is slated to premiere May 8 at 9 p.m. ET/PT on PBS. The special will also be available for streaming on May 8 on all station-branded PBS platforms, including PBS.org and the PBS Video app.

“We’ll blend collages of user-generated content from around the country with deeper dives into several main stories in which participants will record themselves each day for three weeks, creating a chronology of their experiences as they cope with this new reality,” said Bill Margol, senior director of PBS programming & development and executive in charge of PBS American Portrait, in a statement. “We’ll weave in and out of those main stories with ‘chorus’ montages from all types of people around the country, across age, race, gender identity, income, ability and geography.”

Elsewhere, the American pubcaster is readying to launch a documentary film offering unprecedented access into a year in the life of Pope Francis and those who work within the Vatican’s walls.

Filmed over the course of the fifth year of Pope Francis’s pontificate, Inside the Vatican (pictured) from Oxford Film and Television will provide rare insight into one of the most important places in the Christian world: the independent city-state of the Vatican City.

Inside the Vatican will provide insight into Pope Francis as he introduces various reforms, shakes up the clerical establishment and deals with the fallout of a sex abuse scandal that breaks as he embarks on a visit to Ireland.

The project will also provide an intimate look into the lives of those who work and live within the Vatican, including the Pope himself, his head of security, the nuns who serve the homeless, the choristers of the Sistine Chapel and the papal gardener, among others. 

Inside the Vatican premieres on April 28 at 9 p.m. ET/PT via PBS, pbs.org and the PBS app.

The title was originally produced by Oxford Film and Television for the BBC. It is directed and produced by Silvia Sacco. Executive producers include Sam Hobkinson and Nicolas Kent. Fatima Salaria and Simon Young are commissioning editors for the BBC.

About The Author
Jillian Morgan is a special reports editor at realscreen with a background in journalism and digital marketing. She joined the publication in 2019 after serving as the assistant editor to trade publications HPAC and On-Site. With a bachelor of journalism from the University of King's College in Halifax, she also works as a freelance writer and fact-checker.

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