An American Love Story

A black man and a white woman have struggled for 30 years against racial stereotypes and societal prejudice to keep their family together.

Premiere Date
September 12, 1999
600 minutes
  • Award laurels-r Created with Sketch.
    2000 American Women in Radio and Television, Inc.-25th Annual Gracie Allen award winner
  • Producer

    Jennifer Fox

    Fox is an internationally acclaimed, award-winning director, producer, camerawoman, and educator who has been involved in countless documentaries over the last 25 years. Her first film, Beirut: The Last Home Movie was released theatrically in nine countries and broadcast in 20 countries. It won seven international awards, including Best Documentary Film and Best Cinematography at the 1988 Cinema Du Reel Festival. An American Love Story received a Gracie Award for Best Television Series, and was named "One of the Top Ten Television Series of 1999" by The New York Times and five other major American papers. Her most recent work, the acclaimed six-part film Flying: Confessions of a Free Woman, premiered at the International Documentary Festival in Amsterdam (IDFA) in 2006 and the Sundance Film Festival in 2007 as Special Events as well as numerous other festivals. Flying recently completed-a 20 city theatrical tour in North America before airing on the Sundance Channel, BBC, TV-2, SVT, and YLE in Summer 2008. Fox is currently preparing to edit a new feature documentary, filmed over 20 years, called Learning to Swim, co-produced with the Dutch Buddhist Television Network (BOS) and awarded a prestigious Hartley Film Foundation grant. Fox has executive produced many films including the award-winners: Love & Diane, On the Ropes, Double Exposure, Project Ten: Real Stories from a Free South Africa; Cowboys, Indians, and Lawyers, and Absolutely Safe? She has consulted on numerous documentaries, including Southern Comfort and Stone Reader. She has lectured and taught master classes on filmmaking at universities, television stations, and for government training programs around the world.

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    The Film

    An American Love Story explores the dynamics of race relations through two people's individual lives and their struggles to build a family at the intersection of two separate American communities — one black and one white. The 10-hour series follows blues musician Bill Sims, corporate manager Karen Wilson, and their two daughters. Like An American Family, the series charts both mundane and momentous events, taking the temperature of contemporary family life, asking what has happened to American society since the civil rights movement, and tracing the role race and gender play in three decades of an (extra)ordinary multiethnic relationship.