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_JFK: Breaking the News_ -- Is there an easier way to purchase this DVD?

Discussion in 'DVD' started by Jack Briggs, Nov 27, 2003.

  1. Jack Briggs

    Jack Briggs Executive Producer

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    Most PBS stations recently aired the excellent 60-minute, Jane Pauley-narrated documentary JFK: Breaking the News. Produced by Dallas PBS affiliate KERA, this you-are-there documentary uses rare live footage from KERA to recreate in vivid fashion what those fateful hours were like.

    It is one of the best documentaries on the subject I have seen.

    And I was gladdened to note that it is available now on DVD, according to an announcement during the program's end credits.

    Unfortunately, there's a catch: A long search at ShopPBS.org didn't turn up the title. Turns out it is available, at the moment apparently, only through KERA in Dallas. And it's yours for a "gift donation" of only $100 ($150 for a special combo pack featuring the book of the same title).

    While I have the utmost respect for PBS and its affiliate stations, I would prefer not to make yet another "gift donation" to any PBS station (my own KCET-Channel 28 gets money enough from me each year).

    A Google search turned up no other vendors. So I guess I'm out of luck for now, huh?
     
  2. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

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    I'm wondering about this title too, Jack. Your glowing recommendation makes me want it all the more.

    But it does seem you've got to donate a hundred clams to PBS-TV in order to get the DVD. [​IMG] [​IMG] .......

    http://support.kera.org/tv/ItemDetai...FBCBEFEF3BCF51

    Jack ..... Is your local Los Angeles PBS affiliate (KCET), by chance, going to repeat the program sometime in Nov./Dec.? I'd keep an eye on their schedule. Maybe you'll be able to catch it & tape it.

    Although the DVD would be preferred. It says here that the DVD will have Special Features and Bonus Material from the "Sixth Floor Museum" in Dallas.

    Unfortunately, my local PBS station did not air the program even once.

    [​IMG]
     
  3. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

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  4. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

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    Jack....

    Another JFK (in life) program I know you'd enjoy is "Primary" (Robert Drew Collection).

    Plus: "Crisis: Behind A Presidential Commitment", in which Drew follows JFK around, up close & personal, during the 1963 "George Wallace Blocks The Doorway At The University Of Alabama" incident. Very intriguing footage.

    Do you have these two DVDs?
     
  5. Greg_S_H

    Greg_S_H Executive Producer

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    I can't help with the PBS piece, but you might be interested in The Kennedy Assassination: Beyond Conspiracy, which aired on the 20th. It was a great special, and I know I'll order it soon. The new computer graphics program they use is excellent.
     
  6. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

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    Yes, Greg, I agree with you re. the ABC (Peter Jennings) Special. Excellent.

    I thought ahead and recorded that one off to DVD myself on the date it aired (saving $35.90 in the process [​IMG]). So I won't need to order the outrageously-priced one from the ABC News Store.

    By-the-by, Greg ..... Were you aware that the Dale Myers' 3-D computer
    animation used in the ABC Special is going to be featured in a DVD all its
    own -- "Secrets Of A Homicide". I look forward to seeing this detailed account of the Myers' animation. (I was hungry for more of the actual animation footage on the ABC Special.) [​IMG]
     
  7. Allan Mack

    Allan Mack Supporting Actor

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    I "taped" JFK: Breaking the News on my DVD recorder. Great footage...
     
  8. Greg_S_H

    Greg_S_H Executive Producer

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    I didn't know about it, David. Thanks for the heads-up! That program was brilliant. I loved when it was overlayed onto the Zapruder film. Looks like I'll be ordering two DVDs (and failing to avoid the $35.90 like you did [​IMG]).
     
  9. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

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  10. Jim*F

    Jim*F Stunt Coordinator

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    I too was very upset when I went to the KERA website only to find out I had to "support" PBS with a big donation to get the DVD. So, I called the 800 number advertised at the end of the program, and a copy of the DVD is on its way ($24.95 plus $3.00 S/H).

    Did I see correctly on ABC's site that the DVD of their recent Kennedy special is $69.95?? My goodness!
     
  11. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

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  12. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

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  13. Jim*F

    Jim*F Stunt Coordinator

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    I'll gladly give you a report, David VP.

    Last week, my local PBS aired "JFK: Breaking The News" again in a 90-minute format. The extra 30 minutes were essentially glorified pledge breaks (it looked like a generic one that every PBS affiliate could use). In addition to asking for support and showing the JFK-related "pledge gifts" (the same that are on the KERA website -- VHS, DVD, book, combo, etc.), they interviewed the executive producer of the documentary and the journalist who wrote the companion book (Hugh Aynesworth, I believe), and talked a bit about the DVD.

    They said the DVD contained the complete original program (about 1 hour) with nearly 60 minutes of additional footage -- extended versions of news clips and interviews with journalists that aired in the special, some clips and interviews that were cut for timing/flow reasons, etc. (And they showed a clip or two -- I remember seeing an extended take of Bob Schieffer explaining how Oswald's mother called his Dallas newspaper and how he drove her to the police station, and the "extended cut" includes Schieffer's description of things Oswald's mother said during the car ride.)

    On a book-related side note, the new book "President Kennedy Has Been Shot" is a great companion to this special (while not the official book companion that is advertised on the KERA website, it reads pretty much like an extended transcript of the DVD). It is 300 pages long, and takes the reader through the four days via news/radio reports and recollections of the journalists. The book also includes a 60-minute CD narrated by Dan Rather with radio clips and audio of TV broadcasts from those four days. It should still be available at Amazon & BN for about $18 (40% off the list price of $30!). Again, it is a great companion to the DVD.
     
  14. Joe Schwartz

    Joe Schwartz Second Unit

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  15. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

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    Thanks very much, Jim, for your detailed post (#15). [​IMG]

    I had wondered why (at www.jfklancer.com) some people were insisting that the PBS Special was 90 and not 60 minutes on some stations. Now you've clarified why.
     
  16. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

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  17. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

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    Does anyone have THIS 256-PAGE HARDCOVER? Just arrived this month.
    Worthy of inclusion in a JFK fan's library?

    [​IMG]
     
  18. Greg_S_H

    Greg_S_H Executive Producer

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    One thing Dallas residents benefited from last weekend was an 8 hour broadcast of the WBAP coverage of the event from 1963. I didn't get to hear much of it this year, but it's extremely fascinating. I even heard snippets of a music program that was interrupted with the breaking news. Sadly, they stated emphatically that the broadcast will never be available for purchase. They recommended getting 8 hours worth of recording materials, but I didn't feel like rushing out to get them. Maybe next year.

    Of course, the above book/CD sounds like a good companion to that broadcast.
     
  19. Bob Graham

    Bob Graham Supporting Actor

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    Getting back to the original topic of the thread, one strategy might be to just wait. I know of other programs produced for PBS that were originally available only as member premiums that were later released commercially. The GORDON LIGHTFOOT LIVE IN RENO concert specifically comes to mind. If the producers went to the trouble to produce extras, they will probably want to recoup some of their expenses by making it available commercially. They are just giving subscribers first crack at it.
     
  20. Allan Mack

    Allan Mack Supporting Actor

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