CNN to Air Special Presentation of Three-Part Documentary Obama: In Pursuit of a More Perfect Union
Parts One and Two Air February 25 at 8pm ET
Part Three Airs February 26 at 9pm ET
NEW YORK, NY – (Thursday, February 23, 2022) – CNN will air a special presentation of HBO Documentaries three-part film, Obama: In Pursuit of a More Perfect Union. Beginning Saturday, February 25 at 8pm ET, CNN will broadcast Parts One and Two, with Part Three airing Sunday, February 26 at 9pm ET.
Obama: In Pursuit of a More Perfect Union is directed by Emmy® winner Peter Kunhardt (HBO’s True Justice: Bryan Stevenson’s Fight for Equality, John McCain: For Whom the Bell Tolls, King in the Wilderness) and chronicles the personal and political journey of President Barack Obama, as the country grapples with its racial history. Weaving together conversations with colleagues, friends and critics, and interspersed with his own speeches and news interviews, the film begins with Obama’s childhood and takes us through his perspective as the son of a white mother from Kansas and an African father, his spiritual formation by a generation of Black leaders, and his hopes for a more inclusive America. Through the story of one man irrevocably bound to the history of a country, Obama: In Pursuit of a More Perfect Union reflects on the country’s past and present national identity.
The series provides context, insight and critique from a wide range of participants including: author Jelani Cobb; the late Representative John Lewis; political consultant David Axelrod; Rev. Alvin Love; author Michael Eric Dyson; journalist Laura Washington; Rev. Jeremiah Wright; journalist Michele Norris; New Yorker editor David Remnick; Rev. Al Sharpton; professor Cornel West; politician Jesse Jackson; author Ta-Nehisi Coates; NAACP’s Sherrilyn Ifill; political advisor Valerie Jarrett; professor Henry Louis Gates Jr.; actor Keegan-Michael Key; former government official Shirley Sherrod; journalist David Maraniss; professor Ken Mack; speechwriter Jon Favreau; advisor Broderick Johnson; and Representative Bobby Rush.
Part One of Obama: In Pursuit of a More Perfect Union looks back over Obama’s upbringing by a single mother from Kansas and white grandparents, his early schooling in Hawaii and his education at Columbia University and Harvard Law School. Through archival interviews, Obama reflects on the impact of having an estranged African father, growing up bi-racial and his evolving relationship with the African American community in Chicago, where he worked with Black churches as a community organizer.
Part Two of Obama: In Pursuit of a More Perfect Union takes viewers from Obama’s presidential bid to his election to the White House in November 2008, exploring the obstacles and successes along the campaign trail. With constant pressure to define his identity along racial lines and frustrated by what he saw as a distraction from other important issues, Obama delivers his “race speech” of March 2008, a determined defense of the U.S. Constitution and a plea to look beyond America’s “racial stalemate” in order to advance prosperity and unity.
Part Three of Obama: In Pursuit of a More Perfect Union takes the audience to the White House years and the formidable hurdles that Obama faced trying to pass legislation in a bitterly divided Congress. He ultimately succeeded in passing the Affordable Care Act but the chasm across the aisle in Washington grew ever wider. As the nation faced a period of heightened awareness around police brutality towards African Americans and the fervent partisan battle over gun control, his critics accused him and the administration of not doing enough to lead a conversation about race, and the president moves forward with policies that focus on racial justice and empowerment.
Obama: In Pursuit of a More Perfect Union is available to stream now on HBO Max.
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