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Making of the President DVD cover

 The Making of the President The 1960's

  Review by Suzanne 6/24/11

This is a set of three DVD's, about John F. Kennedy, Hubert Humphrey, Richard Nixon, and Lyndon B. Johnson. These films were all done in the 1960's, so they are black and white, and they play like old film reels. They have done a good job to bring them back to quality DVD life as much as possible.

we used to watch films like this in school, and it really reminds me of those (I used to fall aleep whenever they'd show one. I'm surprised I don't now, just out of habit). They are very well done movies by famed historian Theodore H. White.

The first movie is all about the primary elections leading up to the 1960 election. The second disk is about the 1964 election, and the third disk is about 1968. They also have some shorter films. One is about Kennedy's first thousand days in office (made after he was killed); another is about Lyndon Johnson as president. They also provide a 16 page viewers' guide that tells you some information about that time and who was whom. And finally, each DVD also has short text biographies of the candidates.

It's a nice set for anyone interested in these presidents and presidential hopefuls, and that time period. Of course, there is also some sadness because of Kennedy's assassination.

Just bear in mind, if you don't know anything about this time, that even the most fact-based documentary carries the bias of the people making it. White really loved Kennedy, so the films about him do reflect that quite a bit.

This would be a great gift or buy for anyone who likes history, or documentaries, or Kennedy.


Emmy® award-winning campaign documentaries make their home video debut;

As seen on ABC, CBS, and A&E


On DVD from Athena July 5, 2011

Based on Pulitzer Prize-winning author Theodore H. White’s books

“Completely fascinating” The New York Times

“Superlative” The New York Times

Silver Spring, MD — The landmark documentaries The Making of the President: The 1960s debut on home video from Athena on July 5, 2011. The winner of four Emmy® awards, including best documentary and television program of the year, and broadcast in the 1960s on ABC, CBS, and A&E, the three documentaries collected here forever changed the landscape of political journalism by offering a full and in-depth look at the tumultuous presidential campaigns of 1960, 1964, and 1968. The programs are based on the bestselling books by Theodore H. White. His book on the 1960 campaign won the Pulitzer Prize. Produced by the Emmy®-winning and Oscar®-nominated David L. Wolper (Roots, North and South, The Race for Space, LA Confidential), these narratives offer a unique snapshot of an era steeped in political protest and progress. The DVD 3-volume boxed set also includes two rarely seen bonus programs, a 1964 tribute to John F. Kennedy and an intimate look at Lyndon B. Johnson ($59.99,

In the 1960s, writer Theodore H. White changed journalism forever by putting the campaign for the White House under a microscope. The first of his bestselling series on presidential elections, The Making of the President, 1960, earned a Pulitzer Prize, stayed on the bestseller list for more than forty weeks, and became a TV documentary that won four Emmys®, including program of the year. This collection brings together three television adaptations of White’s influential books for a full, in-depth account of presidential politics during the tumultuous 1960, 1964, and 1968 elections.

These programs feature White’s insightful scripts and rare film footage that reveal the winners and losers in unguarded, behind-the-scenes moments. All the backroom deals, convention-floor drama, and campaign strategy come alive again in three historic races:  Kennedy-Nixon, Johnson-Goldwater, and Humphrey-Nixon-Wallace. From preprimary jockeying to the final vote tally, these spellbinding narratives dissect the inner workings of our democracy and trace the path to power. 

Journalist and author Theodore H. White served as China bureau chief for Time and as correspondent and editor for The New Republic, The Reporter, and Colliers. He won numerous writing awards, including a Pulitzer Prize and two Emmys®.


Bonus programs: A Thousand Days: A Tribute to John F. Kennedy (an homage first shown at the ’64 Democratic National Convention), and The March of Time: Seven Days in the Life of the President (an intimate look at Lyndon B. Johnson)

• 16 page viewer’s guide: White essay on Wolper’s documentaries, a biography of White, and articles on each election’s major issues and some quixotic campaigners. 

• On the DVD: The Contenders after Their Campaigns: updated biographies on candidates who did not win their party’s nomination, plus more at

Street Date: July 5, 2011                              SRP: $59.99  

DVD 3-Vol. Boxed Set – 3 programs - Approx. 237 minutes, plus 76 min. bonus - SDH Subtitles

About Acorn Media:

Headquartered in suburban Washington, D.C., Acorn Media U.S. distributes distinctive home video releases to the North American market with a special focus on the best of British television. 2011 releases include Upstairs, Downstairs: 40th Anniversary Edition; BBC’s smash hit series New Tricks; U.S. debuts of must-see new series Garrow’s Law, Reggie Perrin, Wired, Identity, and Single-Handed; more episodes from Doc Martin, Murphy’s Law, Marple, Poirot, George Gently, Murdoch Mysteries, Midsomer Murders; as well as the Blu-ray of Brideshead Revisited: 30th Anniversary Edition.

Athena releases provide an authoritative and entertaining learning experience through high quality, informative, non-fiction programming. Athena’s 2011 releases include The Genius of Design, Discovering Hamlet, Genius of Britain, The Cosmos: A Beginner’s Guide, Weapons Races, The Making of the President, HBO’s The Battle of Marjah, Art of the Western World, Joseph Campbell: Mythos III, The Windsors, and several acclaimed programs from Bill Moyers and Mike Wallace. Clips are available at

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Updated 6/24/11  


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