Was the United States a beacon of freedom or an emerging imperialist power? A new 3-part documentary series from the same Lucasfilm-JAK Films documentary unit that produced ninety four one-hour history documentaries for young people asks fundamental questions of American identity and its role in the world of nations since the early eighteenth century. Going from advocacy of democracy to containment, through the emergence of the US as a world power after the first world war to world superpower during the cold war and finally the world's only superpower.
ZAP was brought in to provide on-line post production including HD conforming, color grading, title design and animation.
This ground-breaking series revisits our foreign involvments and adventures throughout our history: Cuba and Spain, The Philippines, Mexico, Vietnam, Somalia, the Former Yugoslavia, Iraq and Afghanistan.
The American Historical Association got a sneak preview of epsode one earlier this year:
Broadening our vision.... to the Philippines, indeed taking in the Westward Movement on the North American continent and the whole Pacific region, is the first public screening (a world premiere!) of a just-completed Lucasfilm production, Manifest Destiny: To Conquer or Redeem. Directed and produced by Sharon Wood, the film tells the powerful story of the Spanish-American and U.S.-Philippine Wars in the context of continental expansion and conquest. As part one of Manifest Destiny, which will be a three-part series on U.S. foreign policy, this film tracks the evolving role of “American Exceptionalism” as the United States grew from a rebellious colony into a continental power and began to develop an overseas empire. Utilizing some remarkable historic footage and revisionist approach, it’s a work that guarantees you’ll never again see William McKinley as a kind of innocent victim of circumstances.
The three films all create linear worlds in which ambiguity is downplayed and the argument or story is made as clear as possible given the available evidence.