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American Masters is a series of television programs devoted to the biographies on American actors, artists and writers. They have influenced the pop culture of the country in a way that has withstood the test of time. The producer selected each subject based on the wide ranging impact they had on American cultural history.

Wednesday 9:00 PM et/pt on PBS
34 Seasons, 258 Episodes
June 23, 1986
Documentary & Biography, News
8.0/10
Cast: Lee Grant
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American Masters Full Episode Guide

  • Mark the women's suffrage centennial with stories of pioneering women who shaped American politics.

  • A story of a defiant movement of women of color, transforming politics from the ground up.

  • An artful and intimate meditation on the legendary storyteller that examines her life and works.

  • Dive into the life and career of groundbreaking writer, performer and subversive star Mae West.

  • Discover the man behind the legend. With full access to the Miles Davis Estate, the film features never-before-seen footage, including studio outtakes from his recording sessions, rare photos and new interviews.

  • A profile of National Medal of Arts-winner N. Scott Momaday, the Kiowa novelist, short-story writer, essayist and poet. His 1968 novel "House Made of Dawn" won the Pulitzer Prize and helped Native American literature breakthrough to the mainstream.

  • Discover the art world giant whose color fields changed art history, and now fetch millions.

  • Discover the life of charismatic Puerto Rican actor Raul Julia, known for his versatile roles.

  • Explore the legacy of the feminist author who transformed U.S. literature with her science fiction.

  • Follow the journey of one of the greatest choral music conductors in the world, Robert Shaw.

  • Explore the six-decade career of four-time Tony Award-winning playwright Terrence McNally.

  • A profile of the conductor, his work with the civil rights movement, and his musical legacy.

  • The life and work of Garry Winogrand (1928-84), the epic storyteller in pictures who harnessed the serendipity of the streets to capture the American 1960s-70s. His "snapshot aesthetic" has become the universal language of contemporary image making.

  • A profile of Joseph Pulitzer (1847-1911). A journalist who became a media mogul with an outspoken, cantankerous editorial voice and two best-selling newspapers, he championed what he regarded as the sacred role of the free press in a democracy

  • Experience the power of song in the fight for equality through the feminist singer-activist's story.

  • See how country star Charley Pride used music to triumph over prejudice and injustice.

  • The talented entertainer strove to achieve the American Dream in a time of racial prejudice.

  • A profile of molecular biologist James Watson, one of the co-discoverers of the structure of DNA. In 1962, Watson shared the Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine with Francis Crick and Maurice Wilkins, who, with Rosalind Franklin, provided the data on which the structure was based.

American Masters Video Clips & Extras

American Masters Season 33 Promo | PBS Clip (00:31) Decoding Watson Preview | American Masters | PBS Clip (02:55) Sammy Davis, Jr: Ive Gotta Be Me Preview | American Masters | PBS Clip (02:36) AMERICAN MASTERS | Itzhak | Trailer | PBS Clip (02:04) AMERICAN MASTERS | Artists Flight: Elizabeth Murray | Trailer | PBS Clip (01:05) AMERICAN MASTERS | Artists Flight: Jean-Michel Basquiat | Trailer | PBS Clip (03:40) AMERICAN MASTERS | Artists Flight: Eva Hesse | Trailer | PBS Clip (01:44) AMERICAN MASTERS | Artists Flight: Wyeth | Trailer | PBS Clip (01:36)

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