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David Wolper, producer of 'Roots,' has died
8NewsNow.com - AP ^ | 08/11/10 | LYNN ELBER

Posted on 08/11/2010 11:37:46 AM PDT by Borges

David L. Wolper, whose 1977 miniseries Roots - a generational saga of an American family - became a landmark in television history, has died. He was 82.

Wolper's spokesman, Dale Olson, said Wolper died peacefully in his Beverly Hills home Tuesday evening while watching television with his wife Gloria. Olson said Wolper died of congestive heart disease and complications of Parkinson's disease.

During a long career, Wolper also produced the children's classic "Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory." But his TV work remained his best-known accomplishment, particularly "Roots," based on the best seller by Alex Haley. The ABC series was seen in whole or part by 130 million people - more than half the country - when it ran for eight nights in 1977.

"I make it happen," Wolper said in a 1999 Associated Press interview. "Who bought Alex Haley's book 'Roots' for TV? Me. I hired the director, hired the writer. I put them all together. I'm like the chef. If I mix all the ingredients right, it's going to taste terrific. If I don't, it's not going to come out good."

The miniseries chronicling of Kunta Kinte, enslaved as a teenager in 18th-century West Africa to be sold in America, and his descendants represented a different kind of family story, one told from the black perspective. It was based on Haley's novel, a Pulitzer Prize-winner that mixed accounts of his own ancestors with fiction.

(Excerpt) Read more at 8newsnow.com ...


TOPICS: Culture/Society
KEYWORDS: davidlwolper; obituary; roots; wolper

1 posted on 08/11/2010 11:37:47 AM PDT by Borges
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To: Borges

“It was based on Haley’s novel, a Pulitzer Prize-winner that mixed accounts of his own ancestors with fiction.”

They’re finally adding in the “fiction” part, after decades of lies. Now to remove “mixed accounts of his own ancestors”.


2 posted on 08/11/2010 11:41:30 AM PDT by SJSAMPLE
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To: Borges

Roots got it wrong from the opening scene. Slaves weren’t “captured” by white slave traders using nets. They were mostly purchased from the winners of waring black tribes - many of whom were Muslim. Somehow, that little detail always gets left out.


3 posted on 08/11/2010 11:42:22 AM PDT by OldDeckHand
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To: SJSAMPLE

I remember the hoopla, but I never saw the series, I wonder how many of the white deaths and rapes at the hands of blacks result from that kind of message being constantly hammered into their consciousness over the last 45 years.


4 posted on 08/11/2010 11:45:41 AM PDT by ansel12
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To: Borges

So now we start the next trifecta: TV producers. I wonder who the next two will be?


5 posted on 08/11/2010 11:46:48 AM PDT by equalitybeforethelaw
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To: Borges

Any truth to the rumor that Alex Haley committed suicide when he found out he was adopted?


6 posted on 08/11/2010 11:49:01 AM PDT by Redleg Duke (RAT Hunting Season started the evening of March 21st, 2010!)
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To: Borges
That was a great mini-series. Only, in my opinion, Lonesome Dove topped it.

RIP Mr. Wolper.

7 posted on 08/11/2010 11:52:10 AM PDT by carton253 (Ask me about The Stainless Banner - a free e-zine dedicated to the armies of the Confederacy.)
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To: ansel12

I saw a guy on one of the trashy daytime “talk” shows (Jenny Jones, Springer, et al.) who claimed that he’d watch “Roots” so that he’d get angry enough to go out and hurt white people.

However, the real story that Haley lifted from a WHITE author is about as bad as that portrayed in “Roots”.


8 posted on 08/11/2010 11:52:48 AM PDT by SJSAMPLE
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To: SJSAMPLE
IIRC, Alex Haley stole the idea from another author who had written a book about Jewish families escaping the slavery of the Nazis.

He then changed everything to match some fictional fantasy he had concocted about America's early history and slavery.

I don't believe that there is ONE SINGLE FACTUAL event, nor person, in the entire book, or movie.

9 posted on 08/11/2010 11:56:33 AM PDT by UCANSEE2 (The Last Boy Scout)
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To: carton253

Agree, I’m not quibbling over trivia, it was compelling to watch and a milestone in TV programming. RIP Mr. Wolper.


10 posted on 08/11/2010 11:56:44 AM PDT by bigbob
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To: Borges
"I make it happen," Wolper said in a 1999 Associated Press interview. "Who bought Alex Haley's book 'Roots' for TV? Me. I hired the director, hired the writer. I put them all together. I'm like the chef. If I mix all the ingredients right, it's going to taste terrific. If I don't, it's not going to come out good."
11 posted on 08/11/2010 11:58:08 AM PDT by UCANSEE2 (The Last Boy Scout)
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To: Borges

Some of the other actors in the mini-series from what I remember was O.J. and Mr. Brady. I remember O.J. being interviewed at the time (he was still in the NFL at the time and actually popular, a difficult picture for younger people to see) and saying that the toughest part about it was the scene when he was running after young Kunte Kinte and how Lavaar Burton was faster than him and they had to have him slow down so O.J. could catch up. It was a good series even if it was fictional.


12 posted on 08/11/2010 12:10:33 PM PDT by Old Teufel Hunden
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To: Borges
David L. Wolper Presents: Monsters! Mystery or Myth was the highest rated documentary in television history.
13 posted on 08/11/2010 12:12:40 PM PDT by Oratam
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To: UCANSEE2

I hadn’t gotten down to your post, but I was thinking EXACTLY the same thing. Just saw “WTD” the other day. What a bunch of pompous A-holes......


14 posted on 08/11/2010 12:13:11 PM PDT by Vermont Lt (I lived in VT for four years. That was enough.)
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To: carton253

Lonesome Dove is the best miniseries ever produced for TV. Period. Nothing else is even close.


15 posted on 08/11/2010 12:24:17 PM PDT by day10 (Integrity has no need of rules.)
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To: Borges

Is it true that Alex Haley was adopted?


16 posted on 08/11/2010 12:26:20 PM PDT by TheCause ("that these United Colonies are, and of right ought to be, free and independent States")
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To: day10

yep


17 posted on 08/11/2010 12:31:48 PM PDT by Lib-Lickers 2
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To: UCANSEE2

As I heard it, a white author did actual research and included a number of non-fiction stories about African slaves in “The African” by Harold Courlander. Haley wrote a book, but it was soon apparent that “Roots” borrowed heavily from the original author.


18 posted on 08/11/2010 12:35:46 PM PDT by SJSAMPLE
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To: Old Teufel Hunden

I agree, it was a good series and was excellent TV. It was such a HUGE deal - our whole family watched it and it was fascinating.

Fast forward to present day and I realize the historical problems, but I accept it as a piece of fiction and think Mr Wolper did what he was good at - produce mini-series! Not to mention Wily Wonka!


19 posted on 08/11/2010 1:07:36 PM PDT by Cathy
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To: Borges

Wasn’t he also connected to that Leonard Nimoy series “In Search of..”? I know I used to see his name attached to something like that.


20 posted on 08/11/2010 1:29:40 PM PDT by BallyBill (WARNING:Taking me serious could cause stress related illness.)
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To: Borges

RIP.


21 posted on 08/11/2010 1:30:45 PM PDT by fieldmarshaldj (~"This is what happens when you find a stranger in the Amber Lamps !"~~)
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To: Borges
Willi Wonka has more truth and facts than any of the so called reality mini series “Roots”. Plus the Author Ronald Dhale actually wrote his own material and did not Plagiarize from anyone.
22 posted on 08/11/2010 7:05:05 PM PDT by ABN 505
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To: Borges; All
IMDb

Wikipedia

23 posted on 08/11/2010 9:06:28 PM PDT by EveningStar (Karl Marx is not one of our Founding Fathers.)
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To: Borges

I saw Roots on TV a couple of years ago. I laughed through most of it because it was so predictable and the writers made sure every white character was the stereotypical southern redneck. All slaveowners were evil-— Ed Asner and Robert Reed (Mr. Brady) were rapists. And Sandy Duncan’s character was the ditzy southern belle only interested in ballgowns.


24 posted on 08/12/2010 1:14:31 AM PDT by snowflake2428
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To: OldDeckHand
Bears repeating. Tribal chiefs didn't want anybody encroaching on their property ( slaves ). Anybody who landed would be in “ Indian country” and have to fight for their lives the whole excursion. Outside slave traders were limited to visiting a couple of islands, only with permission of the controlling chiefs.
25 posted on 08/12/2010 1:30:29 AM PDT by Hillarys Gate Cult
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To: ansel12

Re: “ I remember the hoopla, but I never saw the series, I wonder how many of the white deaths and rapes at the hands of blacks result from that kind of message being constantly hammered into their consciousness over the last 45 years.”

****************

I remember the big to-do about that series that I refused to watch — what a crock —


26 posted on 08/12/2010 1:32:27 AM PDT by CaliforniaCon
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To: CaliforniaCon

Some of our teachers made us watch it. Sure helped the ratings.


27 posted on 08/12/2010 1:34:33 AM PDT by Hillarys Gate Cult
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To: UCANSEE2

RE: “IIRC, Alex Haley stole the idea from another author who had written a book about Jewish families escaping the slavery of the Nazis.
He then changed everything to match some fictional fantasy he had concocted about America’s early history and slavery.

I don’t believe that there is ONE SINGLE FACTUAL event, nor person, in the entire book, or movie.”

***************

Agree — no ‘facts’ in Roots —

It’s right up there with that other mess — “Dances with Wolves,” or, as my late father called it, “Dances with Facts.”


28 posted on 08/12/2010 1:35:54 AM PDT by CaliforniaCon
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To: day10

RE: “Lonesome Dove is the best miniseries ever produced for TV. Period. Nothing else is even close.”

*************

What??? You didn’t like The Thorn Birds???? LOL


29 posted on 08/12/2010 1:37:38 AM PDT by CaliforniaCon
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To: CaliforniaCon

Just couldn’t get into it...... :-)


30 posted on 08/12/2010 6:22:10 AM PDT by day10 (Integrity has no need of rules.)
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To: CaliforniaCon

No one claimed ‘Dances With Wolves’ was anything but fiction.


31 posted on 08/12/2010 6:30:19 AM PDT by Borges
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To: Borges

RE: “No one claimed ‘Dances With Wolves’ was anything but fiction.”

************

My late father, a huge fan of and expert on the timeframe this ‘story’ took place, said nothing rang true and though it may not have been presented as ‘fact’ by Hollwood, people who know better tend to be insulted when there are no real facts presented.

Then there’s the little matter of Kevin Costner’s lack of talent but that’s another story.


32 posted on 08/12/2010 1:08:05 PM PDT by CaliforniaCon
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To: Redleg Duke
Any truth to the rumor that Alex Haley committed suicide when he found out he was adopted?

No, but he did have to issue an apology to Luke Skywalker.


33 posted on 08/12/2010 1:11:55 PM PDT by reagan_fanatic (Never trust anyone who points their rear end at God while praying.)
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To: reagan_fanatic

Wrong black guy, stupid. Scratch that comment.


34 posted on 08/12/2010 1:15:55 PM PDT by reagan_fanatic (Never trust anyone who points their rear end at God while praying.)
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To: CaliforniaCon

It’s fiction from start to finish and fiction never lies. If you wanted fact watch a documentary on the period.


35 posted on 08/12/2010 1:48:13 PM PDT by Borges
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To: Borges

RE: “It’s fiction from start to finish and fiction never lies. If you wanted fact watch a documentary on the period.”

*****************

I did not see the film. Many did, including my father, and found it laughable from reports here in Hollywood.

What’s your problem anyway? Kind of overly prickly over a simple comment I made about a movie. If you set a film or TV show or whatever in a certain timeframe and then nothing about it rings true, it seems a little silly. But hey, maybe that’s just ME.


36 posted on 08/12/2010 2:57:07 PM PDT by CaliforniaCon
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To: CaliforniaCon
I didn't take offense just discussing the issue. It was based on a novel and was obviously a romanticized vision of the period. So was Gone with the Wind.
37 posted on 08/12/2010 3:02:03 PM PDT by Borges
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