This portrait of the inimitable magician Ricky Jay delves into the mysterious world of sleight-of-hand and its small circle of eccentric devotees. Jay is also a best-selling author, historian, actor and a leading collector of antiquarian books and artifacts. Told largely in Jay’s own distinctive voice, the documentary traces the story of his achievement and that of other master magicians.
Bing Crosby (1903-1977) was the most popular and influential multi-media star of the first half of the 20th century. For more than three decades, through radio, film, television and records, he reigned supreme. For this new documentary, Crosby’s estate granted American Masters access to the entertainer’s archives, including never-before-seen home movies, Dictabelt recordings, photos and more.
The baby boomer generation (1946-1964) has significantly and uniquely changed our world. The year 2014 marks an important shift in American culture, as the last boomers turn 50. American Masters: The Boomer List tells the story of this influential generation through the lives of 19 iconic boomers. Directed by Timothy Greenfield-Sanders.
This documentary takes the audience on a year-long ride with Joan Rivers in her 76th year of life; it peels away the mask of an iconic comedian, laying bare both the struggle and thrill of living life as a groundbreaking female performer. The film is by Ricki Stern and Annie Sundberg.
Her photograph Migrant Mother is one of the most recognized and arresting images in the world, a portrait that came to represent America's Great Depression. Yet few know the story, struggles and profound body of work of the woman who created the portrait: Dorothea Lange. Directed and narrated by Lange's granddaughter Dyanna Taylor.
Tanaquil Le Clercq (1929–2000) was a star ballerina with the New York City Ballet who greatly influenced choreographers George Balanchine (her husband) and Jerome Robbins (her friend). Filmmaker Nancy Buirski spotlights Le Clercq’s ballet career, influence on dance, and her struggle with polio, which paralyzed her at the height of her fame.