Eyes Back on the Prize

Apparently I’m late to the party, but while taking a PBS survey this morning–yes, I know that procrastination is bad, but was for a good cause–I learned that they will be broadcasting the acclaimed Civil Rights documentary, Eyes on the Prize, which had been blocked from TV broadcast or DVD release due to expired copyright licenses. Most famously, the documentary featured a scene in which supporters and friends sing the copyrighted song, “Happy Birthday,” to Civil Rights leader Martin Luther King, Jr. According to a Wired article from August 2005, the Ford Foundation and another philanthropist stepped forward with $850,000 to work towards clearing the copyrighted material. That clearances for this documentary would cost this much money, of course, is another issue altogether, but if this news is true, I’m pleased to know that Eyes will have the opportunity reach an entirely new audience.

Update: I did some more digging and found this press release indicating that Eyes on the Prize will air in Fall 2006, as a part of PBS’s ongong American Experience series.

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