“Finding Your Roots with Henry Louis Gates, Jr.” Season Nine Premieres January 3, 2023
Jim Acosta, Carol Burnett, Jamie Chung, Brian Cox, Billy Crudup, Claire Danes, Jeff Daniels, Angela Davis, Viola Davis, David Duchovny, Tony Gonzalez, Jeh Johnson, Van Jones, Richard Kind, Cyndi Lauper, Joe Manganiello, Tamera Mowry, Niecy Nash, Edward Norton, Julia Roberts and Danny Trejo are all on tap.
[via press release from PBS]
“FINDING YOUR ROOTS WITH HENRY LOUIS GATES, JR.” SEASON NINE PREMIERES JANUARY 3, 2023
New 10-Episode Season Featuring 21 New Celebrities Premiering on PBS
New Episodes Explore Ancestry Stories of Jim Acosta, Carol Burnett, Jamie Chung, Brian Cox, Billy Crudup, Claire Danes, Jeff Daniels, Angela Davis, Viola Davis, David Duchovny, Tony Gonzalez, Jeh Johnson, Van Jones, Richard Kind, Cyndi Lauper, Joe Manganiello, Tamera Mowry, Niecy Nash, Edward Norton, Julia Roberts and Danny Trejo
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Arlington, VA (July 28, 2022) – Renowned scholar Dr. Henry Louis Gates, Jr. returns for an all-new season of FINDING YOUR ROOTS. Over the course of ten episodes, Gates uses genealogical detective work and cutting-edge DNA analysis to guide twenty-one influential guests through the branches of their family trees. Uncovering buried secrets and inspiring stories of long- forgotten ancestors, the new season will premiere January 3, 2023 on PBS, and stream on PBS.org and the PBS Video app.
FINDING YOUR ROOTS Season Nine highlights the genealogical backgrounds and ancestral stories of prominent guests that helped to define who they are today. The season features actors Jamie Chung (“Lovecraft Country”), Brian Cox (“Succession”), Billy Crudup (“The Morning Show”), Claire Danes (“Homeland”), Jeff Daniels (“American Rust”), Viola Davis (“The Woman King”), David Duchovny (“The X-Files”), Richard Kind (“Inside Out”), Joe Manganiello (“True Blood”), Tamera Mowry (“The Real”), Edward Norton (“Fight Club”), Julia Roberts (“Ticket to Paradise”) and Danny Trejo (“Machete”); pop star Cyndi Lauper; comedians Carol Burnett and Niecy Nash; athlete and sportscaster Tony Gonzalez; journalists Jim Acosta and Van Jones; activist Angela Davis; and statesman Jeh Johnson.
At the center of it all, guiding every discovery, is host and executive producer Henry Louis Gates, Jr., the Alphonse Fletcher University Professor and director of the Hutchins Center for African & African American Research at Harvard University.
Gates remarks, “I am deeply proud of this series – and especially this season. I think it is so important today to show what we have in common, as Americans, and as human beings, despite our apparent differences. The stories we find in our guests’ family trees demonstrate – repeatedly – that we are a fundamentally blended nation that draws strength from our diversity.”
Assembling the extensive family trees and ancestral narratives alongside Dr. Gates are DNA expert CeCe Moore (chief genetic genealogist for Parabon Nanolabs and host of ABC’s “The Genetic Detective”) and genealogists Nick Sheedy and Kimberly Morgan, who together have solved hundreds of mysteries and reconnected innumerable lost relatives over the past two decades.
The public can explore and share their family histories via social media using the hashtag #FindingYourRoots on Facebook, Twitter and TikTok, via Facebook.com/FindingYourRootsPBS and @HenryLouisGates, and on the series companion site, pbs.org/FindingYourRoots.
FINDING YOUR ROOTS WITH HENRY LOUIS GATES, JR., Season Nine is a production of McGee Media, Inkwell Media, Kunhardt Films and WETA Washington, D.C. Henry Louis Gates, Jr. is the writer, host, and executive producer. Dyllan McGee and Peter Kunhardt are executive producers. John F. Wilson is the executive producer in charge for WETA. Bill Gardner is the executive in charge for PBS. Sabin Streeter is the senior producer. Natalia Warchol is the series producer. Hannah Olson is the consulting producer. Deborah Clancy Porfido is the supervising producer. Kevin Burke is the producer. Robert L. Yacyshyn is the line producer. Sabin Streeter and Krista Whetstone are directors.
Corporate support for FINDING YOUR ROOTS WITH HENRY LOUIS GATES, JR., Season Nine is provided by Ancestry and Johnson & Johnson. Major support is provided by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. Support is also provided by Ford Foundation, Candace King Weir and by The Inkwell Society and its members.
An electronic press kit for FINDING YOUR ROOTS WITH HENRY LOUIS GATES, JR., Season Nine, including downloadable photos for promotional use, is available on PBS Pressroom.
# # #
About McGee Media
McGee Media was founded by award-winning filmmaker Dyllan McGee to produce documentary content that is innovative, compelling, and immersive. Every story is born from a vision of a fairer and more equitable world. Whether it is the sweeping history of the African-American experience, or the intimate personal stories of the hundreds of women who made up the feminist movement, McGee Media uses television, film, and digital media in radical new ways to inform and inspire. Recent projects include Emmy nominated FREDERICK DOUGLASS: IN FIVE SPEECHES (HBO), NOT DONE: WOMEN REMAKING AMERICA (PBS), THE BLACK CHURCH: THIS IS OUR STORY, THIS IS OUR SONG (PBS), RECONSTRUCTION: AMERICA AFTER THE CIVIL WAR (PBS), AFRICA’S GREAT CIVILIZATIONS (PBS), BLACK AMERICA SINCE MLK: AND STILL I RISE (PBS), MAKERS (PBS), FINDING YOUR ROOTS (PBS), ONCE & FOR ALL (AOL), FIRST IN HUMAN (Discovery), and RANCHER, FARMER, FISHERMAN (Discovery).
About Inkwell Media
Inkwell Media was founded by Henry Louis Gates, Jr. to produce sophisticated documentary films about the African and African-American experience for a broad audience. The six-part PBS documentary series THE AFRICAN AMERICANS: MANY RIVERS TO CROSS (2013) earned the 2013 Peabody Award and NAACP Image Award. Inkwell has co-produced FREDERICK DOUGLASS: IN FIVE SPEECHES (2022), FINDING YOUR ROOTS, Seasons 1-8 (2012-2022), THE BLACK CHURCH: THIS IS OUR STORY, THIS IS OUR SONG (2021), RECONSTRUCTION: AMERICA AFTER THE CIVIL WAR (2019), AFRICA’S GREAT CIVILIZATIONS (2017), BLACK AMERICA SINCE MLK: AND STILL I RISE (2016), BLACK IN LATIN AMERICA (2011), FACES OF AMERICA (2010), LOOKING FOR LINCOLN (2009), AFRICAN AMERICAN LIVES 2 (2008), OPRAH’S ROOTS (2007) and AFRICAN AMERICAN LIVES (2006).
About Kunhardt Films
Kunhardt Films specializes in documentary films about the people and ideas that shape American history. Most recently completed is the 4 part Apple TV+ documentary series, LINCOLN’S DILEMMA. Previous documentaries include the 3-part HBO series, OBAMA: IN PURSUIT OF A MORE PERFECT UNION and feature documentary, A CHOICE OF WEAPONS: INSPIRED BY GORDON PARKS. Past productions include Emmy and Peabody award winning, TRUE JUSTICE: BRYAN STEVENSON’S FIGHT FOR EQUALITY (HBO, 2019); JOHN MCCAIN: FOR WHOM THE BELL TOLLS (HBO, 2018); KING IN THE WILDERNESS (HBO, 2018); THE NEWSPAPERMAN: THE LIFE AND TIMES OF BEN BRADLEE (HBO, 2017); BECOMING WARREN BUFFETT (HBO, 2017); JIM: THE JAMES FOLEY STORY (HBO, 2016). Other films include LIVING WITH LINCOLN (HBO, 2015); NIXON BY NIXON: IN HIS OWN WORDS (HBO, 2014); FINDING YOUR ROOTS (PBS); MAKERS: WOMEN WHO MAKE AMERICA (PBS); THE AFRICAN AMERICANS: MANY RIVERS TO CROSS; (PBS); and GLORIA: IN HER OWN WORDS (HBO, 2011). Kunhardt Films was founded in 1987 as Kunhardt Productions. It is run by Peter Kunhardt and his two sons Teddy and George in Pleasantville, New York.
WETA is the leading public broadcaster in the nation’s capital, serving Virginia, Maryland and the District of Columbia with educational initiatives and with high-quality programming on television, radio and digital. WETA Washington, D.C., is the second-largest producing-station for the PBS system. In addition to producing documentaries and series with Henry Louis Gates, Jr, WETA produces news and public affairs programs including PBS NEWSHOUR and WASHINGTON WEEK; films by Ken Burns and Florentine Films including BENJAMIN FRANKLIN, MUHAMMAD ALI and THE U.S. AND THE HOLOCAUST; performance specials including IN PERFORMANCE AT THE WHITE HOUSE, THE LIBRARY OF CONGRESS GERSHWIN PRIZE FOR POPULAR SONG, NATIONAL MEMORIAL DAY CONCERT and A CAPITOL FOURTH; and health content from Well Beings, a multiplatform campaign that includes original broadcast and digital content, engagement campaigns, and impactful local events, including the recent documentary KEN BURNS PRESENTS HIDING IN PLAIN SIGHT: YOUTH MENTAL ILLNESS. More information on WETA and its programs and services is available at www.weta.org.Visit www.facebook.com/wetatvfm on Facebook or follow @WETAtvfm on Twitter.