Frontline Takes a "World" View in New PBS Series Premiering Thursday, May 23

Posted by PBS Publicity on

PBS Program to Promote Understanding of Global Trends and World Events

Alexandria, Virginia, April 8, 2002 - PBS will expand the acclaimed Frontline series this spring with a new program examining international affairs, Frontline/World, co-produced by WGBH Boston and KQED San Francisco. Four episodes of Frontline/World will be produced, with the first installment premiering on Thursday, May 23 at 9 p.m. (check local listings). The limited series will continue through early 2003.

"Current events underscore the need to engage and inform viewers on an ongoing basis about issues beyond the borders," said PBS president Pat Mitchell. "We think that television-particularly public television-plays a vital role in giving Americans the facts and perspectives they need to understand our interrelated world. PBS is happy to broaden this excellent series."

Frontline/World, headquartered at KQED, will air in Frontline's normal Thursday time slot. The one-hour magazine-format program will offer a forum for reporting on global issues and will build, in part, on the mentoring partnership that has paired Frontline producers with younger journalists-many of them from other countries-at the University of California's Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism.

Stephen Talbot, a former producer with KQED and veteran of Frontline and the Center for Investigative Reporting, will helm Frontline/World as series editor. David Fanning is the executive producer. KQED executive-in-charge for Frontline/World is Sue Ellen McCann. WGBH executive-in-charge for Frontline/World is Sharon Tiller.

"Even before September 11, we felt we needed to be doing more international stories," says executive producer David Fanning. "The additional hours for Frontline will offer us the flexibility to respond to national and international events with timely reporting."

"Frontline/World is the right program at the right time for KQED to pool our resources with public television colleagues," noted John Boland, executive vice president and COO of KQED San Francisco. "With the Bay Area's diversity and important international ties to the Pacific Rim, it's more important than ever to tap into this region's perspective. We look forward to forging this partnership with PBS and WGBH."

The Frontline/World Web site will extend the broadcast with original reporting, streaming video and interactive features that will help the visitor connect with international issues. The site will make a particular effort to tie international stories to American audiences and to spark a moderated online dialogue.

Now in its 20th season, Frontline is the recognized leader in producing compelling and engaging documentaries that explore the stories and issues of our times. Frontline, produced by WGBH Boston, remains the only long-form public affairs documentary series on American television-producing more hours of documentary programming than all the commercial networks combined.

KQED operates KQED Public Television 9, the nation's most-watched public television station (in prime-time), and Digital Television 9, Northern California's only public television digital signal; KQED Public Radio 88.5 FM, the most-listened-to public radio station in the nation; the KQED Education Network, which brings the impact of KQED to thousands of teachers, students, parents and media professionals through workshops, seminars and resources; and www.kqed.org, which harnesses the power of the Internet to bring KQED to communities across the Web.

PBS, headquartered in Alexandria, Virginia, is a private, nonprofit media enterprise owned and operated by the nation's 349 public television stations. Serving nearly 90 million people each week, PBS enriches the lives of all Americans through quality programs and education services on noncommercial television, the Internet and other media. More information about PBS is available at PBS.org, the leading dot-org Web site on the Internet.

Major funding for Frontline/World is provided by PBS and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. Additional funding is provided by ABB, Ltd., The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation and the Wallace Alexander Gerbode Foundation.


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Kathleen Kaan, PBS
(212) 708-3004

Erin Martin Kane, Frontline
(617) 300-5320

Brian Eley, KQED
(415) 553-2238