Ken Burns Is Equally Partial to Leo Tolstoy and Guy Fieri

Three and a half decades ago, long before he became the most popular historian in America, the documentary filmmaker Ken Burns left New York for rural New Hampshire to avoid getting a "real job" while he edited what would become The Brooklyn Bridge, his first-ever film. Before it ended up being nominated for an Academy Award, though, Burns had to bring his own projector and set up the folding chairs himself at the Brooklyn Museum to make a screening happen—a scenario that definitely won't be repeating when Burns returns to the borough where "apparently one quarter of the world's population now lives" on December 7, when he'll be screening a newly restored version of the film and having a much more official Q&A session. In the meantime, Burns, whose new Vietnam War series premiered this fall on PBS, filled us in on how he squeezes in time to dictate tweets about the Civil War and tune into Guy Fieri while working on eight films at once in his culture diet.

Hemispheres - War Stories

In a culture of flash-in-the-pan internet sensations, of insta-memes and GIFs as news, the long-form, episodic films of Ken Burns and Lynn Novick serve as sweeping acts of defiance. While everyone else is rushing to judgment, time is on their side.  [ Read More... ] 

The New York Times - Ken Burns and Lynn Novick Tackle the Vietnam War

Ken Burns shot to fame in 1990 with “The Civil War,” which drew record audiences for PBS and jump-started a revival of popular interest in the subject. Nearly three decades and more than 20 documentaries later, he is perhaps the nation’s most trusted historical brand, as much an icon of American-ness as baseball (the subject of his nine-part 1994 documentary) and apple pie (one of the few classic American themes he hasn’t taken on).  [ Read More... ] 

The New Yorker - Ken Burns's American Canon

Like Steven Tyler, of Aerosmith, Ken Burns has a summer house on Lake Sunapee, in New Hampshire. The property is furnished with Shaker quilts and a motorboat; every July 4th, a fifteen-foot-long American flag hangs over the back deck.  [ Read More... ] 

C-Span

Video: Ken Burns talked about his PBS series, Prohibition