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Acclaimed Flannery O’Connor documentary to air on PBS March 23


Long Distance Productions | YouTube | Fair Use

Zelda Caldwell - published on 07/08/20 - updated on 03/23/21

This is the first time the award-winning film about the life of the Catholic writer has been made broadcast to the general public.

Fans of the Catholic writer Flannery O’Connor will be thrilled to learn that a documentary film about O’Connor will be available to watch on PBS stations tonight, March 23 at 8 p.m. ET (check local listings).

The biographical documentary Flannery was awarded the first Library of Congress/Ken Burns prize for film in 2019 and has been a favorite on the film festival circuit since its premiere. The film was directed by Elizabeth Coffman and Marc Bosco, a Jesuit priest and professor at Georgetown University.

O’Connor was the author of the novels Wise Blood and The Violent Bear it Away and 32 short stories, many of which had a touch of horror to them. Her Catholic sensibility comes through in her often freakish characters and violent situations that serve to reveal God’s presence amidst the mundane. The film tells the story of O’Connor’s life, faith, and struggles with the disease lupus, which she she succumbed to at the age of 39 in 1964.

The film features archival film footage of interviews with those who knew O’Connor, along with never-before-seen personal letters. The author’s family farm in Georgia, Andalusia, where she spent the end of her life after her disease confined her to home, is featured, as well as interviews with those who were inspired by her, including Mary Karr, Tommy Lee Jones, Lucinda Williams, and Hilton Als.

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