Search Museum of the Moving Image

Please be advised: the Museum will be open on Wednesday, June 19, 12:00–6:00 p.m. for the Juneteenth holiday.


Making Roots, and Making TV History


A discussion with Ben Vereen, Lou Gossett, Jr., LeVar Burton, and Leslie Uggams, moderated by Donald Thoms

Presented in collaboration with Pioneers of Television, the four-part PBS series on WNET/Thirteen which premiered on January 15, 2013 at 8:00 p.m.

Part of the Museum series Changing the Picture, sponsored by Time Warner Inc.

The miniseries Roots, which aired in 1977, was one of the most influential and highest rated television events of all time; the final episode had an audience of more than 100 million. Thirty-five years later, Roots still resonates within popular culture, having changed forever the way that African-Americans were depicted on television, and having a strong impact on the nation’s collective guilt about slavery, an issue that is strongly present in popular culture today, with the heated discussion around the films Lincoln and Django Unchained. Stars of the series, Ben Vereen, Lou Gossett, Jr., LeVar Burton, and Leslie Uggams, will participate in a discussion about the show’s production and its long-lasting legacy. The moderator is Donald Thoms, Vice President of Programming, PBS. This program is being presented in collaboration with the PBS series Pioneers of Television; excerpts about Roots, from the episode focusing on miniseries that airs on February 5, will be shown.

Tickets: $15 public / $9 Museum members / free for Silver Screen members and above. Order online or call 718 777 6800 to reserve tickets.