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The March (2013 film)

The March (titled Martin Luther King and the March on Washington in the United Kingdom) is a BAFTA-nominated documentary directed by John Akomfrah and narrated by Denzel Washington. It is about the historic 1963 March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom - largely remembered for Martin Luther King's famous and iconic "I Have a Dream" speech delivered on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C.[1] It formed the centrepiece of a special week of programs and online events and activities celebrating the 50th anniversary of the March.[2]

The March
Directed byJohn Akomfrah
Narrated byDenzel Washington
Composer(s)Tandis Jenhudson
Country of originUnited Kingdom
United States
Original language(s)English
Executive producer(s)Robert Redford
Laura Michalchyshyn
Krysanne Katsoolis
Producer(s)David Lawson
Lina Gopaul
CinematographyDewald Aukema
Editor(s)Cliff West
Production company(s)Smoking Dogs Films
Sundance Productions
Wildwood Enterprises, Inc
Cactus Three
Original networkPBS
France 3
Original release27 August 2013 (2013-08-27) (PBS)
28 August 2013 (2013-08-28) (BBC Two)
11 October 2013 (2013-10-11) (France 3)

The film features interviews with some of the key people involved in the event: members of the inner circles of the core organizational groups such as Jack O'Dell, Clarence B. Jones, John Lewis, Julian Bond, Norman Hill, A. Philip Randolph and Andrew Young; Hollywood supporters and Civil Rights Movement campaigners including Harry Belafonte, Diahann Carroll and Sidney Poitier; performing artists at the March such as Joan Baez and Peter Yarrow; as well as John F. Kennedy administration official Harris Wofford; the CBS broadcaster who reported from the March, Roger Mudd; Clayborne Carson, the founding director of Stanford's Martin Luther King, Jr. Research and Education Institute and a participant in the March; as well as those who witnessed the march on TV and were influenced by it, including Oprah Winfrey.[3][4]


The film had its U.S. premiere on 23 August 2013 on PBS[2] and its UK premiere on BBC Two on 28 August 2013, the 50th anniversary of the original event.[4] It was broadcast in France on 11 October 2013 on France 3.[5]


On Metacritic, the film has an average score of 86 out of 100, based on six reviews, indicating "universal acclaim".[6]

In the U.S. the San Francisco Chronicle wrote that "The March is not only a timely film document, it is also properly structured as the great drama the event was".[7] The New York Times described it as "a succinct and well-conceived documentary".[8]

In the U.K. The Observer gave the film high praise, reporting that it was "so good that it ought to be on the national curriculum" and calling it "quite possibly the best thing the BBC has created in years.".[9] The Independent called it a "supremely authoritative documentary"[10] while The Guardian stated that "the success of this documentary lay in its range of different voices."[11]

The UK broadcast was nominated for a BAFTA at the 2014 British Academy Television Awards in the specialist factual category, losing to eventual winner "David Attenborough's Natural History Museum Alive".[12]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ "About the film - The March". PBS.
  2. ^ a b "PBS Commemorates 50th Anniversary Of Historic March On Washington With Week Of Special Programs". PBS. 1 July 2013.
  3. ^ "The March (2013 TV Movie) Full Cast & Crew", IMDb.
  4. ^ a b "BBC Two - Martin Luther King and the March on Washington". BBC. 12 November 2013.
  5. ^ "La longue marche de Martin Luther King", France 3, 11 October 2013.
  6. ^ "The March". Metacritic.
  7. ^ David Wiegand (22 August 2013). "'The March' review: The rally that changed America". SFGate.
  8. ^ Neil Genzlinger, "Tracing the Steps That Led Up to the March on Washington", The New York Times, 26 August 2013.
  9. ^ Euan Ferguson (31 August 2013). "Martin Luther King and the March on Washington; New Tricks; Burgled; Horizon: Dinosaurs – the Hunt for Life – review". the Guardian.
  10. ^ Simon Usborne (29 August 2013). "TV review: Martin Luther King and the March on Washington, BBC2". The Independent.
  11. ^ John Crace (29 August 2013). "Martin Luther King and the March on Washington; MLK: The Assassination Tapes; Wentworth Prison – TV review". the Guardian.
  12. ^ "Television in 2014".

External linksEdit