An exclusive look at Ken Burns' newest film, "The National Parks: America's Best Idea"

August 6, 2009, 2:12 pm

This month, catch a behind-the-scenes look at the making of Ken Burns’ newest film, “The National Parks: America’s Best Idea.” Featuring exclusive interviews with the filmmakers and rare footage, “PBS Previews: National Parks” will be airing on PBS up until the film’s broadcast premiere on September 27th at 8 p.m.

In this sneak preview, Ken Burns, writer and co-producer Dayton Duncan, and cinematographer Buddy Squires take viewers inside the six-part, 12-hour series. During interviews and narrated footage, they explain why they chose the parks as their documentary subject and recount the details of their five-year journey through the research, scripting, filming and editing of the series.

The National Parks: America’s Best Idea is a story that spans over 100 years, in states across the country. Filmed in some of nature’s most spectacular locales— from Acadia to Yosemite, Yellowstone to the Grand Canyon, the Everglades of Florida to the Gates of the Arctic in Alaska—the documentary is a story of people from every conceivable background who were willing to devote themselves to saving some precious portion of the land they loved. In the PBS Preview, you’ll catch a glimpse of the film crew as they work inside these beloved parks.

Cameras take you along with the filmmakers on early walks to shoot sunrises and on long hikes into some of our country’s hottest and coldest landscapes, including the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park and Denali National Park. Excerpts from the finished series are featured throughout the preview, offering a taste of what’s to come in the fall.

The preview will be airing in theaters, hotels, train stations and chambers of commerce in national park gateway communities. It will also be airing on PBS, so check your local listings or visit for showtimes.

If you just can’t wait until September to learn more about our national parks, then you can also pick up a copy of America’s Best Idea: A Photographic Journey Through Our National Parks. To purchase a copy, click here