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S32 Ep3

Bombshell: The Hedy Lamarr Story

Premiere: 5/18/2018 | 00:01:13 |

Hedy Lamarr never publicly talked about her life as an inventor and so her family thought her story died when she did. However, in 2016, director Alexandra Dean and producer Adam Haggiag unearthed four never-before-heard audio tapes of Lamarr speaking on the record about her incredible life, finally giving her the chance to tell her own story.

About the Episode

Hollywood star Hedy Lamarr (Ziegfeld Girl, Samson and Delilah) was known as the world’s most beautiful woman – Snow White and Cat Woman were both based on her iconic look. However, her arresting appearance and glamorous life stood in the way of her being given the credit she deserved as an ingenious inventor whose pioneering work helped revolutionize modern communication. An Austrian Jewish emigrant who invented a covert communication system to try to help defeat the Nazis, Lamarr was ignored and told to sell kisses for war bonds instead. It was only toward the very end of her life that tech pioneers discovered that it was her concept that is now used as the basis for secure WiFi, GPS and Bluetooth technologies.

Bombshell: The Hedy Lamarr Story explores how Lamarr’s true legacy is that of a technological trailblazer.

Lamarr never publicly talked about her life as an inventor and so her family thought her story died when she did. However, in 2016, director Alexandra Dean and producer Adam Haggiag unearthed four never-before-heard audio tapes of Lamarr speaking on the record about her incredible life, finally giving her the chance to tell her own story. Family, friends and colleagues, including Mel Brooks and the late Robert Osborne, also share their personal memories of Lamarr, explaining the atmosphere that created the disconnect between her brilliance and her beauty. Bombshell: The Hedy Lamarr Story world premiered at the 2017 Tribeca Film Festival, earned multiple awards at film festivals and was named Best Documentary by the New York Film Critics Online.

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PRODUCTION CREDITS

Bombshell: The Hedy Lamarr Story is a production of Reframed Pictures in association with American Masters Pictures for WNET, Submarine Entertainment, and Artemis Rising. Alexandra Dean is director. Adam Haggiag, Katherine Drew and Alexandra Dean are producers. Susan Sarandon, Michael Kantor and Regina Scully are executive producers. Michael Kantor is American Masters series executive producer.

About American Masters
Launched in 1986 on PBS, American Masters has earned 28 Emmy Awards — including 10 for Outstanding Non-Fiction Series and five for Outstanding Non-Fiction Special — 14 Peabodys, an Oscar, three Grammys, two Producers Guild Awards, and many other honors. To further explore the lives and works of masters past and present, American Masters offers streaming video of select films, outtakes, filmmaker interviews, the podcast American Masters: Creative Spark, educational resources, digital original series and more. The series is a production of The WNET Group.

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UNDERWRITING

Major support for Bombshell: The Hedy Lamarr Story is provided by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. Additional support is provided by Barrie Landry, Anne Ulnick, Richard and Lesley Stone Family Fund, Kelly Cutler and Sonja Perkins.

Support for American Masters is provided by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, AARP, Sue and Edgar Wachenheim III, Rosalind P. Walter Foundation, Cheryl and Philip Milstein Family, Judith & Burton Resnick, Seton Melvin Charitable Trust, The Blanche and Irving Laurie Foundation, The Ambrose Monell Foundation, Lillian Goldman Programming Endowment, Vital Projects Fund, The Philip and Janice Levin Foundation, Ellen and James S. Marcus, The André and Elizabeth Kertész Foundation, Koo and Patricia Yuen and public television viewers.

TRANSCRIPT

[Music] she was the best-looking woman that ever lived I don't know whether it's true but you hear things she is this perfect underdog crime fighter by night story she was such a big star she seems so untouchable she was so ahead of her time he said more than once my beauty is my curse by that she met people never got past your face there are stories almost like a prison escape she created her own reality and I find that really fascinating she did have a secret Wi-Fi Bluetooth that's where her technology you think probably must be possible I might be smart I would say she was a plagiarizing you don't get to be Hedy Lamarr and smart now I know what I did there comes a point when you can't take any more than you have to make yourself heard [Music]

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