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Apr/25/2017
 President Kennedy Has Been Shot  
 
The assassination of President John F. Kennedy and the shocking events that followed were first relayed to a stunned world by a handful of reporters. Through rarely heard vintage audiotapes, archival film footage, and the voices of journalists who were on the scene, this documentary chronicles four days – from the president’s assassination through the transfer of presidential power, the murder of assassin Lee Harvey Oswald, and the resulting funerals.

Synopsis

The story of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy and the shocking events that followed were first relayed to a stunned world by a handful of reporters. The earliest news report crackled across wire service teletype machines just four minutes after the shooting. By the time the drama was over 80 hours later, reporters had become the eyes and ears for a grieving nation struggling to comprehend its terrible loss.

President Kennedy Has Been Shot, based on the book of the same name, is the first television special to chronicle the story of the assassination through the eyes of the reporters who covered it.

Created by award-winning filmmaker Gerardine Wurzburg, and produced in association with State of the Art Inc., President Kennedy Has Been Shot uses rarely heard vintage audiotapes and television footage, to powerfully relive the news that shook the world that weekend. Intimate interviews with the key journalists of those days – Walter Cronkite, Dan Rather, Robert MacNeil, Ike Pappas, Bob Schieffer, Helen Thomas and Tom Wicker – takes viewers through the whirlwind of four days in November with a pace that matches the raw emotions of that time.
Interspersed among news reports and current interviews with the journalists are tense communications from Washington, D.C., the streets of Dallas and from the newsrooms of New York.

From the doomed presidential motorcade in Dallas on Friday, Nov. 22, 1963, to the mournful funeral procession in Washington, D.C., three days later, reporters were eyewitnesses of this poignant moment in American history. Through the reporters’ recollections, President Kennedy Has Been Shot provides surprising revelations and vivid views of a story that changed history.


Reviews


JFK's assassination still fascinates 40 years later As anniversary nears, media readies for blitz

USA Today- Monday, 11/10/2003
Section: D
Page: 3

By Peter Johnson

The media love anniversaries, especially ones that end in zero. But the upcoming 40th anniversary of the assassination of John F. Kennedy will be a full-court press.

Coverage of this anniversary, observers say, is particularly intense for reasons that eclipse the usual fascination with Kennedy's death and an endless national obsession with the Kennedy family.

First, many of the witnesses to the event may not be alive for the next big JFK anniversary, the 50th. Second, parallels between Nov. 22, 1963, and Sept. 11, 2001 -- both were world-changing events -- make discussion of the assassination of interest to all generations.


TV Guide

November 15-21, 2003
HITS AND MISSES

By Susan Stewart

“President Kennedy Has Been Shot” (Sun., CNN)

Operating on the axiom that journalism is history’s rough draft, this evocative special recounts the JFK assassination through the eyes of the reporters who were there. Dan Rather, Tom Wicker, and other journalists relive that day in Dallas, aided by clips of themselves reporting the event. Everybody choked up at some point, and many still do, even now. Emotional but not sentimental, Kennedy will intrigue not only those who remember 1963, but also those who think of it only as history.
MY SCORE (0-10): 8


The Eternal Flame of Cable: After 40 years, J.F.K.'s death still overshadows his life

TIME Magazine
November 17, 2003

By James Poniewozik

...CNN's President Kennedy Has Been Shot (Nov. 16, 8 p.m. E.T.) tells how print and broadcast reporters covered the shooting in the quaint days before cable news and mobile satellite crews. A TV cameraman inside the book depository had to throw his tape out the window so it could be rushed to the studio, and Walter Cronkite recalls that CBS had no camera ready in its newsroom for his reading of the bulletin. This is an intriguing piece for news junkies, but it's curious that CNN should air it, since the dignity of men like Cronkite (and they are all men here) is a rebuke to today's 24-hour news culture. Announcing J.F.K.'s death, Cronkite chokes back tears, but he does not — as many anchors did on 9/11 and less momentous occasions — ostentatiously remind his viewers that he shares their pain. Yet when you watch Jack Ruby shoot Lee Harvey Oswald live on the air, leaving reporters spinning to fill time with little information, you see why this is such a special anniversary for TV. It was a week when a President died — and the logorrheic age of instant news began.


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