Aired Thursday July 7th, 2011 at 7:00 pm on KUED HD Ch. 7.1
On Thursday evening, January 11, 1973 at 9:00 p.m., two filmmakers stepped into the home of the Loud family of Santa Barbara, California and An American Family became the nation's first reality television show. It was the most controversial and talked-about television program of its era. Now, 40 years since filming, the original film crew have adapted the 12 hours into this two-hour compilation of the most memorable and compelling moments of the series. An American Family: Anniversary Edition airs on Thursday, July 7 at 7:00 p.m. on KUED Channel 7.
Chronicling the lives of Loud family, the series made parents Pat and Bill and their five children -- Lance, Delilah, Grant, Kevin and Michele -- household names. Unlike most documentaries of its day, An American Family had no host, no interviews, and almost no voice-over narration.
During the seven months that the Loud's lived in front of the camera, viewers watched dramatic life events unfold, including Pat asking for a separation from her husband Bill, and the coming out of their gay son Lance and his bohemian, New York lifestyle that followed. Considered by many television's first openly gay man, Lance Loud has since become an icon of the gay community.
Producer Craig Gilbert presented the family's daily life as captured by filmmakers Alan and Susan Raymond in the style of cinéma vérité. An American Family was ranked one of the 50 Greatest TV Shows of All Time by TV Guide in 2002.
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