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Script Comp

PBS’s Vietnam War doc sales rise further

PBS’s doc comes from Ken Burns and Lynn Novick

MIPCOM: Ken Burns and Lynn Novick’s landmark documentary The Vietnam War has chalked up sales to 82 countries, including six new deals on the first day of this week’s Mipcom in Cannes.

The six new buyers are Danish pubcaster DR, TrueVision in Thailand, Latin America’s DirecTV, Sweden’s Kunskapskanalen, Belgian pubcaster VRT and AirCanada for inflight rights. PBS International, which is distributing the series, said more deals were likely.

The latest half-dozen join a growing list of public and commercial broadcasters across the globe to have licensed the series, among them the UK’s BBC, Arte in both France and Germany, Telefonica in Spain, Foxtel in Australia, Alhurra Television in the Middle East, TV UNAM and Sistema Público in Mexico, and EBS in South Korea.

The 10-part documentary series, which took a decade to make, launched on PBS in the US last month, pulling in more than 11.9 million unique viewers. Episode one attracted two million streams across PBS’s digital platforms, while the series as a whole generated more than 7.2 million, making it the network’s most streamed series premiere ever.

The documentary includes testimony from all sides, rarely seen digitally remastered archival footage from sources around the globe, plus photographs and recordings. It was written by Geoffrey C Ward and produced by Sarah Botstein, Novick and Burns.

“The Vietnam War is an unmatched achievement that will spark thought, questions and debate around one of the most transformative periods in modern history,” said Tom Koch, VP of PBS International.

“Ken Burns and Lynn Novick have looked at the Vietnam War from a global perspective, capturing the voices on all sides of the conflict to tell the complete story in a way that has never been done before.”

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