Independent Lens Earns Second National Emmy Award

News and Documentary Emmy Award for Outstanding Cultural & Artistic Programming goes to A LION'S TRAIL

(San Francisco, California)—The Independent Television Service (ITVS) announced today that its film anthology series, Independent Lens, which airs weekly on PBS, has received its second national Emmy Award. 

The Independent Lens episode, A LION'S TRAIL, picked up the Emmy for Outstanding Cultural & Artistic Programming at the prestigious 27th annual News and Documentary Emmy Award ceremonies held last night in New York City. A LION’S TRAIL tells the story of an illiterate Zulu musician who wrote Africa's most famous song, Mbube—inspiration for the pop classic The Lion Sleeps Tonight—and received pennies for his efforts. Traveling into the musical worlds of South Africa and the United States, the film celebrates the song's timeless power while revealing injustices within the international recording industry. The program was produced by Francois Verster, Dan Jawitz and Mark J. Kaplan. 

“We could not be more thrilled to receive our second national Emmy Award as we are about to begin our fifth season as a national primetime series,” said Independent Lens Series Producer, Lois Vossen. “We and our partners at PBS work hard to create a series which consistently offers the best of independent film every week. We, along with the filmmakers of A LION’S TRAIL, are deeply honored that the National Television Academy has bestowed this recognition.” 

The award for A LION’S TRAIL marks the second National Emmy Award for the series. BE GOOD, SMILE PRETTY by Tracy Droz-Tragos received the Emmy Award for Best Documentary in 2004. About Independent LensIndependent Lens is an Emmy Award-winning weekly series airing Tuesday nights at 10pm on PBS. Hosted this season by Terrence Howard, the acclaimed anthology series features documentaries and a limited number of fiction films united by the creative freedom, artistic achievement and unflinching visions of their independent producers. Independent Lens features unforgettable stories about a unique individual, community or moment in history. 

Presented by ITVS, the series is supported by interactive companion websites, and national publicity and community engagement campaigns. Further information about the series is available at 

Independent Lens is jointly curated by ITVS and PBS, and is funded by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB), a private corporation funded by the American people, with additional funding provided by PBS and the National Endowment for the Arts. The series producer is Lois Vossen. 

About ITVS 
Celebrating its 15th anniversary, the Independent Television Service (ITVS) funds and presents award-winning documentaries and dramas on public television, innovative new media projects on the Web and the Emmy Award-winning weekly series Independent Lens on Tuesday nights at 10pm on PBS. ITVS is a miracle of public policy created by media activists, citizens and politicians seeking to foster plurality and diversity in public television. ITVS was established by a historic mandate of Congress to champion independently produced programs that take creative risks, spark public dialogue and serve underserved audiences. Since its inception in 1991, ITVS programs have revitalized the relationship between the public and public television, bringing TV audiences face-to-face with the lives and concerns of their fellow Americans. More information about ITVS can be obtained by visiting ITVS is funded by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, a private corporation funded by the American people. 

About PBS 
PBS is a private, nonprofit media enterprise that serves the nation's 348 public noncommercial television stations, reaching nearly 90 million people each week through on-air and online content. Bringing diverse viewpoints to television and the Internet, PBS provides high-quality documentary and dramatic entertainment, and consistently dominates the most prestigious award competitions. PBS is the leading provider of educational materials for K-12 teachers, and offers a broad array of other educational services. More information about PBS is available at,one of the leading dot-org web sites on the internet.

Posted on September 27, 2006