‘Eyes on the Prize’ follow-up special to premiere on HBO Max

The 14-part series originally aired on PBS from 1987 to 1990.

The critically acclaimed civil rights documentary series Eyes on the Prize has been given the small screen treatment. 

Directed by Henry Hampton, the 14-part series originally aired on PBS from 1987 to 1990. The first six episodes are now streaming on HBO Max.

The Oscar-nominated and Peabody and Emmy Award-winning docuseries unpacks the civil rights movement from the mid-1950s to the mid-1980s. The original series aired over two seasons.

HBO Max has rights to part one, which covers the years 1954-65, per Deadline.

A portal opens….
August 19 @hbomax
my debut feature
Eyes on the Prize: Hallowed Ground

Thank you Judi and Henry Hampton for the legacy of Eyes on The Prize, thank you to the ancestors. pic.twitter.com/RtmTuMBjal

— Sophia Nahli Allison (@SophiaNAllison) July 19, 2021

The docuseries will be followed by a new one-hour special, Eyes on the Prize: Hallowed Ground, directed by Oscar-nominated filmmaker Sophia Nahli Allison and co-executive produced by Black Lives Matter co-founder Patrisse Cullors.

Eyes on the Prize: Hallowed Ground “conjures ancestral memories, activates the radical imagination and explores the profound journey for Black liberation through the voices of the movement. A portal through time, Eyes on the Prize: Hallowed Ground is a mystical and lyrical reimagining of the past, present, and future,” per its logline. 

(Credit: Eyes on the Prize/PBS)

“I’ve watched the original Eyes on the Prize a thousand times. And every single time I’ve watched it I’ve been moved to tears and moved to action,” said Cullors, as reported by THR. “My organizing work and artistic practice was shaped by the hours of documentation I witnessed through Eyes.

I am over the moon that I get to be a part of history by teaming up with Blackside, my producing partner, Mervyn Marcano, and the brilliant teams at Anonymous and WarnerMedia as we work to integrate the story of modern-day civil rights leaders for the new Eyes on the Prize: Hallowed Ground.”

Fellow EP Mervyn Marcano, of Hampton’s Blackside film production company, added, “I’m thrilled to be continuing the enduring legacy of Eyes on the Prize, which told a fuller and more complex story of the long fight for racial justice in our country.

It’s why Hallowed Ground, helmed by our visionary director Sophia Nahli Allison, serves as the perfect start to a new chapter for Eyes — it is an emotional reflection on our journey through turbulent times and the truths we need to tell each other to forge new futures. There are indeed so many stories left to tell about who we are as a nation and where we are going, and we are lucky to have Eyes on the Prize continue to light the way.”

“We are very proud to be partnering with this dynamic team of activists and storytellers to bring this important work to our viewers,” said Casey Bloys, chief content officer for HBO and HBO Max. “Across HBO and HBO Max, we are committed to providing a platform for authentic voices representing diverse, essential stories. We are honored to collaborate with our incredibly talented producing team to bring the legacy of Henry Hampton’s groundbreaking work to a new generation.”

Filmmaker Sophia Nahli Allison, at the 93rd Annual Academy Awards on April 25, 2021 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Chris Pizzello-Pool/Getty Images)

Henry Hampton’s sister Judi Hampton serves as an executive producer on the special, along with Marcano and De La Revolución Films’ Melina Matsoukas. The producing team also includes Anonymous Content’s Joy Gorman Wettels and Bedonna Smith.

“I remember watching the pilot of Eyes on the Prize with Henry when it was first created, and I immediately knew this film would be a life-changer for all who saw it,” said Hampton.

She continued, “A special thank you to Joy Gorman and Anonymous Content for reaching out to me years ago with passion for the original series and a dream to help bring Eyes to a new generation. We are grateful for the stellar team of artists and activists who’ve come together to reimagine Eyes on the Prize in a way that will move and inspire a whole new audience.”

Eyes on the Prize: Hallowed Ground drops Thursday, Aug. 19 on HBO Max.

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