WWII in HD 10-Part Series Premieres November 15-19, 9-11pm ET/PT each night

HISTORY™ announced today that the upcoming 10-hour series, WWII in HD, one of the network’s most ambitious projects to date, is set to premiere the week of November 15-19, with two hours airing each night.   WWII in HD promises to be the most visually astonishing World War II drama/documentary ever shown on television – original, color footage, most of which has never been seen before, viewed through the eyes of 12 Americans who fought in or contributed to the war effort. Emmy Award winner Gary Sinise (CSI: NY) will narrate.

 

The ten-part series draws upon more than 3,000 hours of WWII footage culled from archives and private collections around the world. Restored and enhanced through HD technology, the series brings to light riveting footage from sources that range from the National Archives and the Army Heritage and Education Center in Carlisle, Pennsylvania, to Homer Helter’s Military Mall in Naples, Florida.

 

The series follows a handful of people as their personal journeys intersect with one another throughout the war. Their stories, culled from diaries, journals, and new interviews, will be delivered with emotional impact by some of Hollywood’s top talents, helping to recreate the war’s events not as detached historical facts, but rather as profound experiences on the level of a great Hollywood epic. The veterans themselves also appear, recounting their experiences first hand.

 

In addition, individual war stories of these 12 Americans will be voiced by the following actors:


Jack Werner: JUSTIN BARTHA

Rockie Blunt: ROB CORDDRY

Richard Tregaskis: TIM DEKAY

Archie Sweeney: MARK HEFTI

Jimmie Kanaya: JAMES KYSON LEE

Charles Scheffel: RON LIVINGSTON

Shelby F. Westbrook: LL COOL J

Robert Sherrod: ROB LOWE

Bert Stiles: JOSH LUCAS

Jack Yusen: JASON RITTER

June Wandrey: AMY SMART

Nolen Marbrey: STEVE ZAHN

 


HISTORY has preserved and restored thousands of hours of color archival footage unearthed from archives and private collections across the globe and never seen by most Americans. The archival footage has been restored to pristine condition through advanced HD technology. Some of this “lost” footage has not been seen since the 1940s.

 

The story of WWII in HD is told through the experiences of 12 main characters who served during the conflict. Among those profiled, viewers will learn about the war reporter Robert Sherrod, as well as narratives detailing the lives of an Army nurse named June Wandrey who served from the beginnings of the war in North Africa to the liberation of the camps in Germany; Shelby Westbrook, a young African American from Toledo, who became a member of the famed Tuskegee Airmen; Jimmie Kanaya, the son of Japanese immigrants, who served in the U.S. Army and was imprisoned in Europe; and Jack Werner, a Jewish émigré who escaped from Austria before the war and wound up fighting in the Pacific Theater rather than against the man and people he despised, Hitler and the Nazis.

 

Diaries, journals, interviews and Dolby “soundscape” also are incorporated to enhance these striking visuals. WWII in HD thus transforms a war that many Americans know only through black-and-white newsreel footage into something viscerally real, relatable and newly relevant. Viewers will experience, for the first time on television, what this war truly looked and felt like.

 

As part of HISTORY’s multi-media partnership with the Library of Congress and its collection of nearly 140 million items, HISTORY also will incorporate original Library of Congress audio recordings from World War II into the series.

 

“WWII in HD underscores our ownership of history,” said Nancy Dubuc, Executive Vice President and General Manager of HISTORY. “We are committed to preserving our heritage and the remarkable digital technology of WWII in HD will go a long way in ensuring that we never forget the sacrifice made by the Greatest Generation.”

 

Executive Producers for HISTORY are Michael Stiller and David McKillop. WWII in HD is produced for HISTORY by Lou Reda Productions. Executive Producers for Lou Reda Productions are Lou Reda and Scott L. Reda, Producer Liz Reph and Director Frederic Lumiere, with Executive Producer Matthew Ginsburg.

 

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