New Series to Capture American Life in America ReFramed on the WORLD Channel

Sep 07, 2012, 07:00 ET from American Documentary

26-week-long series to document the emotional stories of everyday America

Series launch Sunday, September 9 at 8 p.m. on public television stations (check local listings)

Presented by American Documentary, Inc. and public television's WORLD Channel

WORLD Channel commits to more independent documentaries for public television

NEW YORK, Sept. 7, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ --

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The Series

Through the lens of 26 independent films, America ReFramed tells the many stories of a transforming American culture and its broad diversity.  In these weekly 60 or 90 minute independent films, the series takes an unfiltered look at relevant domestic topics (healthcare, immigration, the workplace, and politics) with personal storytelling tied to programming social themes.

America ReFramed showcases films that will give viewers a "snapshot" of the transforming American life —the guts, the grit and the glamour of a new and changing America.

From contemporary life on Native American reservations to stories of recovery on the Gulf, from hardships and revitalization in towns big and small to stories from city streets across the country, these independent, personal and opinionated films document the times in which we live. 

"This show has been curated in a way to give our viewers what we hope will be a snapshot of a transforming American life," said Chris Hastings, Executive Producer/Editorial Manager for the WORLD Channel.  "We are expanding our mission of diverse story-telling in public media by acquiring films where the camera focuses on places and demographics that truly offer the contemporary American story.  We are proud to bring these amazing films to such a large forum for discussion.  Our goal is to deliver content that has a purposeful mission, and the feature stories of America ReFramed fulfill that promise."

Broadcast on the WORLD channel, America ReFramed can be seen on public television stations nationwide. The series rundown as currently slated for the first three months (with more titles to be announced soon) includes:

  • Chisholm '72, airing Sept. 9, tells the story of the first black woman to run for President in 1972.
  • Street Fight, airing Sept. 16, covers the turbulent campaign of young graduate running for Newark, New Jersey mayor against the four-term incumbent.
  • La Americana, airing Sept. 23, involves an immigrant coming to America to support her disabled daughter back in Colombia.
  • Push: Madison v Madison, airing Sept. 30, follows a Massachusetts high school basketball coach who becomes a father figure to his students.
  • Passionate Politics, airing Oct. 7, is the biography of Charlotte Bunch, a feminist activist and writer impassioned by global human rights.
  • Trust, airing Oct. 14, addresses the issue of urban poverty through Chicago inner-city youth who have faced abuse and trauma and use art and theatre as a form of therapy.
  • Skydancer, airing Oct. 21, is a story of the Mohawk tribe in upstate New York and their involvement in the construction of modern sky scrapers.
  • To Be Determined, airing Oct. 28
  • Medicine Game, airing Nov. 4, pursues the story of two brothers from the Onodaga Nation and their struggle to live up to family's expectations while paying lacrosse for Syracuse University.
  • My Louisiana Love, airing Nov. 11, shares a family post-Karin recovering from their loss and dealing with maintaining their cultural heritage as a tribe not recognized by the United States.
  • Meat Hooked, airing Nov. 18, depicts how the American culture interacts with food, specifically meat and how it relates to different heritages.

For up to the minute scheduling information, please visit:

The Host

Natasha Del Toro, an independent documentary producer and journalist, will bring these films to viewers each week, leveraging her journalistic background with filmmaker interviews and bringing her interpretations to the films with independent commentary.  Del Toro has produced videos for public television's, The Daily,, and PBS' FRONTLINE World, covering a range of topics, including the environment, immigration and politics. She has been honored at the New York Press Club for her achievements.

Born to Puerto Rican parents and raised in North Carolina, she feels she's a healthy mix of Hispanic and Southern, which proves to be beneficial when reporting on different backgrounds and covering the growing population of Hispanics in the United States. She brings an urban, young and energetic voice to the series, weaving the diverse stories together with her journalistic approach. 

The Executives

This series is curated for public television by the American Documentary, Inc. team, who produce the award-winning POV series, and is brought to public television by the WORLD Channel executive team, who present the world's largest collection of independent non-fiction documentaries to broadcast.  With diverse ethnic backgrounds themselves, each executive offers different perspectives to the series' topics.

Simon Kilmurry, Executive Producer of America ReFramed and Executive Director of American Documentary, joined American Documentary | POV in 1999 and was appointed Executive Director in 2006. Kilmurry oversees all aspects of American Documentary's programs and operations, and serves as Executive Producer of POV, PBS' award-winning documentary series.  He has been involved in the production and presentation of over 200 POV films and is the recipient of eight Emmy Awards, two George Foster Peabody Awards and two duPont Columbia Awards.

Cynthia Lopez, Executive Producer of America ReFramed and the Executive Vice President of American Documentary, joined AmDoc | POV in 2000 and was appointed EVP in 2006. She oversees AmDoc's overall development including programming, broadcast distribution, community engagement, communications and marketing, and online initiatives.  She is the founding chair of the board of directors and trustee of NALIP (National Association of Latino Independent Producers), Board Member of Latino Public Broadcasting and has recently served on the Australian International Conference F4 Film Jury, Tribeca Film Institutes 2012 Latin America Media Arts Fund | Heineken Voces Jury and as member of the IDA's Pare Lorentz Award Committee.  She is the recipient of four Emmy Awards, two George Foster Peabody Awards and two duPont Columbia Awards.

Chris Hastings is Executive Producer/Editorial Manager for the WORLD Channel.  Hastings who is based at WGBH Boston, is in charge of  content development, acquisition and production for WORLD Channel. He is a ten-year veteran of WGBH where he has overseen an array of projects – most recently as producer and project director of the WGBH Lab, an innovative incubator for up-and-coming filmmakers with programs that included the LAB Open Call as well as the WGBH LAB filmmakers-in-residence program. He is best known as a production innovator at WGBH, with a knack for inventing new ways of creating high quality media at low cost, which has won him praise, including three regional Emmys for the WGBH LAB Open Call program. An accomplished speaker, Hastings has presented at various conferences, including Integrated Media Association (IMA), MiT5 at MIT, and The Achievement Gap Initiative at Harvard University, Silver docs Films Festival and SXSW Film Festival. He is also a regular collaborator with the National Black Programming Consortium and has sat on the advisory board for the Public Media Corp and as well as presented at NBPC's New Media Institute. 

Elizabeth Cheng, General Manager of WORLD Channel, leads the digital channel featuring nonfiction news and documentary television.  Cheng oversees the best of public television's nonfiction programming from respected, award-winning journalists as well as original content from emerging producers. Formerly, Cheng was the creative executive producer of many award-winning series and specials for WCVB, including nearly all of the station's non-news specials, for which she has received local and national recognition. Among her honors are a national Primetime Emmy Award nomination, two National Association of Broadcasters Awards, two National Association of Television Programming Executives honors, three Gabriel Awards, an Action for Children's Television Award from Peggy Charren, a Parents' Choice Award, and many New England Emmys.

The Filmmakers

Each of the independent filmmakers are accomplished in their own right and bring vast experience to their films.  From well-recognized Shola Lynch, Director of Producer of "Chisholm '72", who has worked on Peabody Award-winning and Emmy Award-winning programming, to Marshall Curry, Producer/Director/Editor of "Street Fight" and two-time Academy Award© nominee, America ReFramed is presenting the work of the best independent and innovative filmmakers across the country.


American Documentary, Inc.
American Documentary, Inc. (AmDoc) is a multimedia company dedicated to creating, identifying and presenting contemporary stories that express opinions and perspectives rarely featured in mainstream media outlets. AmDoc is a catalyst for public culture, developing collaborative strategic engagement activities around socially relevant content on television, online and in community settings. These activities are designed to trigger action, from dialogue and feedback to educational opportunities and community participation.

The WORLD Channel is a 24/7 public television  channel dedicated to delivering the best of public television's nonfiction, news and documentary programming, and a growing schedule of original content from independent producers.  The complementary website expands on broadcast topics and fuels content across social media, providing opportunities for broad and diverse audience interaction.  WORLD is produced and distributed by WGBH Boston, WNET New York Public Media, and American Public Television (APT) in association with the Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) and the National Educational Telecommunications Association (NETA). The WORLD channel is available in markets representing more than 54% of US TV households, and 12 of the top 20 markets, including New York, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Dallas, Boston and Atlanta.  Funding for WORLD is provided by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB).

About WGBH
WGBH Boston is America's preeminent public broadcaster and the largest producer of PBS content for TV and the Web, including Masterpiece, Antiques Roadshow, Frontline, Nova, American Experience, Arthur, Curious George, and more than a dozen other prime-time, lifestyle, and children's series.  WGBH also is a leader in educational multimedia, including PBS Learning Media, and a pioneer in technologies and services that make media accessible to the 36 million Americans who are deaf, hard of hearing, blind, or visually impaired.  WGBH has been recognized with hundreds of honors: Emmys, Peabodys, duPont-Columbia Awards…even two Oscars.  Find more information at

SOURCE American Documentary