ABC has given the green light to what will be an eight-hour miniseries that will chronicle the gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender community’s civil rights movements.
Per the network press release, the series will track key players in the gay rights movement, from the Stonewall Riots – considered the inciting incident of the movement – through the present day, detailing the lives of activists in the 1960s and 1970’s, and onward, focusing on their pioneering work, charting both the personal and political highs and lows of the various movements over the years.
The drama, titled “When We Rise,” has been in development for over two years, says ABC, and is now finally set to go into production, with writer Dustin Lance Black and director Gus Van Sant, who previously worked together on “Milk,” shepherding the project for the network. Black is writing the script and Van Sant will direct the first 2-hour episode of the miniseries, as well as executive-produce. Directors for the remaining 6 hours of the series haven’t been announced yet.
ABC says the series will be inclusive, telling stories about a diverse group of people, and not default to the kind of whitewashing we’ve come to expect from “movement” projects like this.
As it will unfold over 8 hours, I’d expect a somewhat comprehensive work – as comprehensive as one can be in 8 hours; although an extended miniseries certainly allows for something for more exhaustive than a 2-hour movie, given the deep well of stories the creators have to draw from.
No casting nor ETA has been announced yet.