Operation Homecoming Documentary Nominated For Three EMMY® Awards
For immediate release
Washington, DC — The documentary Operation Homecoming, based on the National Endowment for the Arts' (NEA) remarkable anthology and program on wartime writing, has been nominated for three Emmy® Awards in the News & Documentary category. The film, which aired on PBS in April 2007 as part of the America at a Crossroads series, was nominated for Outstanding Informational Programming, Best Documentary, and Outstanding Individual Achievement in a Craft: Music and Sound. Operation Homecoming, which also received a 2008 Academy Award® nomination, was produced by The Documentary Group and directed by Richard Robbins. The 29th Annual News and Documentary Emmy Awards will be presented on Monday, September 22 at Lincoln Center in New York City.
The film depicts powerful writings featured in Operation Homecoming: Iraq, Afghanistan, and the Home Front, in the Words of U.S. Troops and Their Families, an anthology edited by Andrew Carroll and published by Random House in September 2006. Selections show a range of emotions. “Camp Muckamungus” by airman Edward “Parker” Gyokeres is a wry look at the absurdities of day-to-day life in the desert. “Road Work” by Jack Lewis is a heartbreaking account of the unintended victims of a roadside accident in northern Iraq. The film contains dramatic readings by actors including Robert Duvall, Blair Underwood and the contributors themselves. Interviews with established writers Tobias Wolff (In Pharaoh's Army: Memories of the Lost War) and Tim O'Brien (The Things They Carried) explore the larger themes of wartime writing.
“Once again, The Documentary Group has been recognized for its unforgettable presentation of the troops who served in Iraq and Afghanistan,” said NEA Chairman Dana Gioia. “We are delighted that the Operation Homecoming program has inspired this compelling work.”
Several other films and series that were also nominated for Emmys in the News & Documentary category received NEA grants. These include “Billy Strayhorn: Lush Life,” the series Craft in America, and several films produced by the series POV and Independent Lens. The Operation Homecoming documentary is the first Emmy nomination for a film based on a program conducted directly by the National Endowment for the Arts. The Arts Endowment has supported several Emmy Award-winning television series, such as Live from Lincoln Center, Great Performances, and American Masters. In 1985, the Arts Endowment received an Emmy for excellence in service to the arts.
The source for the award-nominated film and the book is the groundbreaking NEA program, Operation Homecoming: Writing the Wartime Experience. With support from The Boeing Company, the NEA Operation Homecoming program sponsored more than 60 writing workshops at more than 30 domestic and overseas military installations from Camp Pendleton in California to USS Carl Vinson in the Persian Gulf to Bagram Airfield in Afghanistan. Workshops were taught by distinguished writers including Tobias Wolff, Jeff Shaara, Bobbie Ann Mason, Joe Haldeman, and Mark Bowden. The Boeing Company also supported the production of the Emmy-nominated documentary.
In addition, the Arts Endowment offered an open call for writing submissions to active military personnel and their families. This ongoing call has resulted in more than 1,200 submissions and 12,000 pages of writings. Almost 100 of the submissions to the NEA were featured in the Operation Homecoming anthology. Additionally, the NEA will preserve all submissions in a federal government archive.
Other Operation Homecoming resources
Operation Homecoming has been administered by the NEA in partnership with the Southern Arts Federation. The initiative was made possible by generous support from The Boeing Company, which has helped the NEA bring numerous quality arts and arts education programs to military communities nationwide and overseas. Information on Operation Homecoming, essays on writing, streaming video of writing workshops, and audio clips are available at OperationHomecoming.org.
About the National Endowment for the Arts
The National Endowment for the Arts is a public agency dedicated to supporting excellence in the arts, both new and established; bringing the arts to all Americans; and providing leadership in arts education. Established by Congress in 1965 as an independent agency of the federal government, the Arts Endowment is the largest annual national funder of the arts, bringing great art to all 50 states, including rural areas, inner cities, and military bases.
National Endowment for the Arts · an independent federal agency