"Bletchley Circle" will focus on World War II codebreakers
PBS announced plans for the "first-ever autobiographical documentary of physicist Stephen Hawking, "A Brief History of Mine," as well as the documentary series "Latino Americans" and the new Sunday-night murder mystery "The Bletchley Circle."
The announcements were among several from PBS at the Television Critics Association winter press tour.
"A Brief History of Mine" (a working title) is slated to air this year and will tell Hawking's life story, largely in his own words. It will feature contributors and Hawking fans including astronaut Edwin Eugene “Buzz” Aldrin Jr., actors Jim Carrey and Benedict Cumberbatch, mathematical physicist Sir Roger Penrose and entrepreneur Sir Richard Branson.
"Latino Americans," a three-part series airing in the fall, will be narrated by Benjamin Bratt and will look at how Latinos have helped shape the United States over more than 500 years. The filmmakers will document the evolution of a “Latino American” identity, from the 1500s to the present day, through interviews with about 100 Latinos in politics, business and pop culture.
The three-part murder mystery "The Bletchley Circle" will air on Sundays beginning on April 21. A production of World Productions distributed worldwide by Content Television, the series aired in the UK in September. It follows ordinary women with the extraordinary ability to break codes, a skill they sharpened during World War II at Bletchley Park, the site of the UK's main decryption site.
The two-hour special "How Sherlock Changed the World," meanwhile, will look at the impact the fictional Holmes had on real investigative techniques. It will premiere in the fall.
PBS also announced that it will hold the second Online Film Festival, featuring short-form films, beginning Monday, March 4, and a multi-platform Independent Film Showcase. Both will feature films from "POV" and "Independent Lens," as well as other public media partners.