FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
PBS NORTH CAROLINA ANNOUNCES SIXTH SEASON OF DOCU-SERIES REEL SOUTH
Seven Films Premiere This Spring and Will Include Inspiring Stories of Black Life Across North Carolina & the American South
RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, NC, 3/16/2021 — PBS North Carolina announces the sixth season of its co-production with Reel South, the nationally distributed PBS documentary series from Southern filmmakers. Season six includes seven new films that will premiere over six weeks, starting Thursday, April 8, at 10 PM, on PBS NC. The series will also be available to stream online at pbsnc.org and on the PBS app.
In its most geographically diverse season to date, spanning seven Southern states, new parts of the region are uncovered and include little-seen explorations of Black life in the American South
with stories that transport viewers from Asheville, North Carolina (MUNI), to San Antonio, Texas (The Passing On) and beyond. Other themes emerged in the season are rural youth activism (You Asked for the Facts), civil rights through sport (Flat Town) and a unique glimpse of suburban Americana (Jasper Mall).
“This season is in direct conversation with the year that was 2020 and the perilous role of the South in any kind of pathway forward in America,” said series producer Nick Price. “The value of and need for diverse Southern stories is inextricable from the amazing contributions and lived experiences of Black Americans. We’re grateful for these storytellers, in front of and behind the camera, for allowing audiences to see a better, complex version of the region.”
Echoing Price’s enthusiasm for this timely collection of stories, PBS North Carolina CEO Lindsay Bierman notes, “This season of Reel South takes on the important contributions to Southern culture from a diverse perspective and paints a truly representative picture of history in the American South. PBS North Carolina is honored to play a role in bringing these important stories to North Carolina viewers.”
To celebrate North Carolina’s place in the new season, PBS North Carolina will host a special preview screening of MUNI along with a virtual discussion of the film, Tuesday, March 30, at 7 PM. Narrated by Darius Rucker and set against the majestic landscape of the Blue Ridge Mountains, MUNI is a love letter to the game of golf, as told by the African American caddies-turned-players who built a rich and vibrant golf culture on a Southern municipal course in Asheville. To learn more about the event and to register, visit pbsnc.org/events.
Reel South season six films and premiere dates are as follows:
Thursday, April 8, at 10 PM (Streaming premiere April 5)
Directed by Paul Bonesteel
A jovial love letter to the game of golf, told by the Black golfers who, despite segregation and racist systems, built a vibrant culture and lasting community on a municipal golf course in Asheville, NC.
Thursday, April 8, at 10:30 PM (Streaming premiere April 5)
Directed by Bryan Tucker
In rural Louisiana, an annual high school football game unites a historically segregated town and allows sport to act as a form of intergenerational, anti-racist reconciliation.
You Asked for the Facts
Thursday, April 15, at 10 PM (Streaming premiere April 12)
Directed by Mary Blessey
Four years after the historic enrollment of James Meredith, student activists at Ole Miss devise a plan to defy the campus’ speaker-ban in 1966 by inviting Robert F. Kennedy, who reveals the truth about back-room politics, the belief-systems of those holding the highest power, and how campus-activism shapes the future of civil rights and all those who bear witness.
Thursday, April 22, at 7 PM* (Streaming premiere April 19)
*(Part of the Earth Day lineup on PBS NC)
Directed by Michiel Thomas
When Atlanta teens Cliff, Ahmani, and Nicholas attempt to trek four 12,000 ft snow-capped peaks in the heart of the Rocky Mountains, they face the thrills, joy, and struggles of navigating the wilds of Colorado and daily life back home in Georgia.
The Passing On
Thursday, April 29, at 10 PM (Streaming premiere April 26)
Directed by Nathan Clarke, Produced by Lana Garland
Renowned African American embalmer, James Bryant, puts his faith in a new generation to continue the legacy of Black funeral homes in San Antonio, Texas. But his young intern, Clarence Pierre, is conflicted about his commitment due to the judgment he receives as a queer, Christian man.
Thursday, May 6, at 10 PM (Streaming premiere May 3)
Directed by Nathan Willis
An Arkansas community mobilizes around a divisive ballot initiative for a new high school, led by a group of high school writers and performers who seek healing for themselves and justice for their community through hip hop.
Thursday, May 13, at 10 PM (Streaming premiere May 10)
Directed by Bradford Thomason and Brett Whitcomb
A dying shopping mall outside of Birmingham, Alabama, its patrons, and its tenants embody the diversity and tenderness of Americana culture in a changing South.
About Reel South
Reel South reveals the South's proud yet complicated heritage, as told by a diversity of voices and perspectives, through the curation and distribution of feature-length and short documentaries. While nationally distributed, the Reel South PBS documentary series is co-produced by PBS North Carolina, South Carolina ETV, and Louisiana Public Broadcasting, and produced in association with Alabama Public Television, Arkansas PBS, Texas Tech Public Media, and VPM. Reel South serves as a platform for non-fiction filmmakers in the American South working within the region’s tradition of storytelling.
About PBS North Carolina
As North Carolina’s statewide PBS network serving the country’s third-largest public media market,PBS NC educates, informs, entertains and inspires its statewide audience on-air, online and in-person. Through its unique partnership of public investment and private support, the statewide network includes in-person engagement, digital-first social and online content delivery, and four over-the-air channels—PBS NC, the North Carolina Channel, Rootle 24/7 PBS Kids and the Explorer Channel. Its transformational events and content spark curiosity and wonder for all North Carolinians. Additionally, PBS NC serves as the backbone for North Carolina’s state’s emergency services. Visit pbsnc.org and join the conversation at facebook.com/MyPBSNC, instagram.com/mypbsnc and @MyPBSNC on Twitter.
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Kathleen Kramer,PBS North Carolina Marketing & Communications