TONIGHT ON METROFOCUS

Former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort and his longtime business associate Rick Gates surrendered to Justice Department special counsel Robert Mueller following an indictment laying out 12 charges against them. Manafort and Gates have been accused of conspiracy against the United States, conspiracy to launder money and making false statements, among several other charges. Jennifer Rodgers, Executive Director of the Center for the Advancement of Public Integrity at Columbia Law School joins us to dissect the allegations. American sports and political commentator Keith Olbermann is here. Find out why he feels that “Trump Is F***ing Crazy.” The dark and mysterious life and death of writer Edgar Allan Poe. Was the master of the macabre actually buried alive? We preview the American Masters film, Edgar Allan Poe: Buried Alive.

Aired on October 30, 2017. 

TRANSCRIPT

> TONIGHT ON 'METROFOCUS,' INDICTED, PRESIDENT TRUMP'S FORMER CAMPAIGN CHAIRMAN PAUL MANAFORT AND FORMER BUSINESS ASSOCIATE GATES CHARGED WITH 12 CRIMINAL COUNTS, INCLUDING CONSPIRACY AGAINST THE UNITED STATES, CONSPIRACY TO LAUNDER MONEY AND FAILING TO REGISTER AS AGENT OF A FOREIGN COUNTRY.

FIRST CHARGES FROM ROBERT MUELLER'S PROBE OF RUSSIAN MEDDLING IN THE 2016 ELECTION.

WILL THERE BE MORE?

AS PRESIDENT'S APPROVAL RATING HITS HISTORIC LOW FOR ANY PRESIDENT.

REACTION AND FALLOUT.

> KEITH OLBERMANN IS HERE.

LIEGE YONZ OF FANS AND RABID DETRACTORS.

WHY HE FEELS QUOTE, TRUMP IS [ BLEEP ] CRAZY.

> THE DEATH OF EDGAR ALLAN POE, WHAAS THE MASTER OF THE MACABRE BURIED ALIVE?

'METROFOCUS' STARTS RIGHT NOW.

♪ MUTUAL OF AMERICA, YOUR

Announcer: THIS IS 'METROFOCUS' WITH RAFAEL PI ROMAN, JACK FORD AND JENNA FLANAGAN.

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> GOOD EVENING AND WELCOME TO 'METROFOCUS,' I'M RAFAEL PI ROMAN.

THE ONGOING INVESTIGATION INTO RUSSIA'S MEDDLING IN THE 2016 PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION TAKES CENTER STAGE AS SPECIAL COUNSEL ROBERT MUELLER FILES THE FIRST CHARGES IN HIS PROBE.

PRESIDENT TRUMP'S FORMER CAMPAIGN CHAIRMAN PAUL MANAFORT AND FORMER BUSINESS ASSOCIATE RICK GATES HAVE SURRENDERED TO FEDERAL AUTHORITIES IN CONNECTION TO MONTH-LONG PROBE INTO ROLE IN ELECTION.

TODAY'S INDICTMENT REVEALS THAT PAIR FACE 12 CHARGES EACH FOR ACTIVITIES FROM 2006 TO 2016.

CHARGES INCLUDE CONSPIRACY AGAINST THE UNITED STATES AND CONSPIRACY TO LAUNDER MONEY THROUGH MULTIPLE ENTITIES TO HIDE THE TENS OF MILLIONS OF DOLLARS THEY MADE AS UNREGISTERED AGENTS OF THE UKRAINIAN GOVERNMENT.

PROSECUTORS ALLEGE THAT MANAFORT BOUGHT PROPERTIES IN THE U.S.

USING OFFSHORE ACCOUNTS TO FUNNEL MORE THAN $75 MILLION.

THEN USED PROPERTIES AS COLLATERAL TO BORROW MORE MONEY IN AMERICA.

GATES IS SAID TO HAVE TRANSFERRED $3 MILLION FROM THESE ACCOUNTS TO OTHER ACCOUNTS HE CONTROLLED.

ACCORDING TO PROSECUTORS, USED HIDDEN OVERSEAS WEALTH TO ENJOY A LAVISH, TAX-FREE LIFESTYLE IN THE UNITED STATES.

WHAT TO WE KNOW ABOUT THESE TWO MEN?

PAUL MANAFORT IS POLITICAL CONSULTANT WHO JOINED THE PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGN IN MARCH 2016.

RESIGNED MONTHS LATER IN RESPONSE TO REPORTS THAT FIRM WAS INVOLVED IN LOBBYING FOR PRO-RUSSIAN FIRM IN THE UKRAINE.

DIDN'T INITIALLY DISCLOSE THIS TO THE JUSTICE DEPARTMENT.

RICK GATES IS SAID TO BE MANAFORT'S LONG-TIME PROTEGE AND JUNIOR PARTNER AND NAME LINKED TO COMPANIES THAT MANAFORT SETTLE UP IN CYPRESS.

POLITICAL IMPACT OF THE CHARGES WILL BE JUST AS IMPORTANT AS LEGAL ISSUES AT PLAY AS ALL EYES TURNED TO TRUMP.

HAD THIS TO SAY, SORRY WITH YOU THIS WAS YEARS BEFORE.

WHY AROUND THE CROOKED HILLARY AND THE DEMS THE FOCUS.

FOLLOWED INITIAL TWEET WRITING QUOTE, ALSO THERE IS NO COLLUSION.

IN A SEPARATE DEVELOPMENT FORMER TRUMP CAMPAIGN FOREIGN POLICY ADVISER GEORGE PAP DOP LIST PLED GUILTY.

UNSEALED RECORDS, FALSELY DESCRIBED INTERACTIONS WITH FOREIGN -- DIRT RELATING TO HILLARY CLINTON.

THERE'S A DIFFERENCE BETWEEN CHARGES AGAINST MANAFORT AND GATES AND POP DOP LUS.

HE BRINGS THE MUELLER PROBE INTO ACTIONS THAT OCCURRED IN THE 2016 CAMPAIGN.

LATEST POLL NUMBERS SHOW THAT PRESIDENT'S APPROVAL RATING IS LOWEST IN ANY PRESIDENCY.

WHAT LIES BEHIND THE NUMBERS AND APPARENT EROSION OF SUPPORT?

TURN TO JENNA FLANAGAN, STANDING BY AT COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY WITH JENNIFER ROGERS, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR FOR THE CENTER FOR ADVANCEMENT OF PUBLIC INTEGRITY.

WELCOME TO THE PROGRAM.

THANKS FOR HAVING ME.

WHAT WAS YOUR REACTION WHEN YOU HEARD THIS INDICTMENT WAS UNSEALED AND SEVERAL PEOPLE WHO WERE GOING TO BE CHARGED BY THE MUELLER INVESTIGATION?

OF COURSE I WAS CURIOUS WITH EVERYONE ELSE TO SEE WHAT THEY WERE.

NOW WE'VE SEEN THE CHARGES, I THINK IT'S VERY INTERESTING.

MAIN CHARGES AGAINST MANAFORT AND GATES DON'T HAVE TO DO WITH ANY CONSPIRACY WITH THE RUSSIANS TO INTERFERE WITH LAST YEAR'S ELECTIONS.

NOT WITHSTANDING THAT, SERIOUS CHARGES THAT CARRY JAIL TIME.

WILL PUT PRESSURE ON MANAFORT AND GATES TO COOPERATE WITH AUTHORITIES.

IN ADDITION TO MUELLER AND GATES, A THIRD GENTLEMAN, GEORGE PAP DOP LUS, HOW IMPORTANT IS IT HE'S PLEADED GUILTY TO THE CHARGES?

HE'S COOPERATING WITH AUTHORITIES ALREADY.

MADE FALSE STATEMENTS, PROVEN BECAUSE HE PLEADED GUILTY TO THAT IN JANUARY AND THEN IN JULY.

HE'S CLEARLY WORKING WITH AUTHORITIES.

LOWER LEVEL CAMPAIGN FIGURE BUT WHAT IS INTERESTING ABOUT THE CHARGES IS HE'S TOLD THEM ABOUT HIS EFFORTS AND EFFORTS OF OTHER PEOPLE ON THE CAMPAIGN TO DEAL WITH THE RUSSIANS AND GET INFORMATION ABOUT HILLARY CLINTON THAT IS DAMAGING AND THEREFORE HELPFUL TO THE TRUMP CAMPAIGN.

HE'S LOW LEVEL FISH BUT FACT HE'S PLEADING GUILTY, HOW BIG A DEAL FOR MANAFORT, GATES OR ANYONE ELSE?

IT'S BIG DEAL TO GET ANYONE TO PLEAD GUILTY AND COOPERATE.

CHARGES DO MENTION A MORE SUPERVISING CAMPAIGN OFFICIAL I THINK THE PERSON WAS CALLED.

WE KNOW HE IMPLICATES OTHER PEOPLE.

QUESTION IS HOW MANY TO WHAT DEGREE?

IS THERE A HIERARCHY TO THE CHARGES WE'VE SEEN SO FAR?

THERE'S MONEY LAUNDERING AND CONSPIRACY AGAINST THE U.S.

CONSPIRACY AGAINST THE U.S.

IS SAYING THAT GATES AND MAN MANAFORT CONSPIRACIED TO BREAKER ANOTHER U.S. LAW.

REGISTERING AS FOREIGN AGENT, NOT AS HUGE OF A DEAL.

DO THEY CARRY HEAVY PRISON TERMS IF HE'S CONVICTED?

WHEN YOU ADD IT TOGETHER, PRISON TERM IS HUGE.

EACH OF THE MONEY LAUNDERING IS TWENTY YEARS, ADD IT TO THE.

FACING GOOD TIME ON THE MONEY LAUNDERING BECAUSE AMOUNTS INVOLVED WERE HIGH AND THAT'S HOW THE SENTENCE IS CALCULATED.

BEFORE ALL THIS HAPPENED, WE SAW THE PRESIDENT TAKE TO TWITTER TO DEFLECT OR PLEAD HIS CASE, CLAIMING THIS WAS FALSE NEWS A WITCH HUNT, MUELLER INVESTIGATION WAS BASICALLY UNFAIR TO HIM.

ALSO SEEN WITH HIS ACTIONS THAT HE'S WILLING TO PARDON PEOPLE WHO HAVE BEEN CHARGED OR FOUND GUILTY.

INFAMOUS CASE WITH SHEF AR PAYIO.

ARE BLANKET PARDONS SOMETHING WE COULD SEE?

SHERIFF ARPAIO, THAT HAD NOTHING TO DO WITH THE PRESIDENT.

PARDONING HIM ESPOUSES A WORLD VIEW BUT COULDN'T BE LOOKED AT AS OBSTRUCTION.

IF HE PARDONED MANAFORT OR GATES OR PAP DOP OLOSS, COULD BE A OBSTRUCTIVE ACT IN AND OF ITSELF, COULD HINDER THEIR COOPERATING IF THEY THOUGHT THEY WOULD BE PARDONED.

PRESIDENT HAS HISTORIC LOW APPROVAL RATINGS.

AT THE SAME TIME HE HAS MADE IT CLEAR HE HAS EVERY INTENTION OF RUNNING FOR OFFICE AGAIN IN 2020.

HOW MUCH OF AN ISSUE DOES THIS MUELLER INVESTIGATION AFFECT HIS ABILITY TO RUN FOR PRESIDENT AGAIN IN FOUR YEARS?

WELL, AT THE END IT REALLY COMES DOWN TO CONGRESS.

IF MUELLER'S INVESTIGATION TURNS UP INFORMATION THAT MUELLER THINKS SHOWS ACTUAL CRIMINAL BEHAVIOR ON THE PART OF THE PRESIDENT, FOR EXAMPLE, OBSTRUCTING JUSTICE BY FIRING JAMES COMEY TO OBSTRUCT THE RUSSIAN INVESTIGATION AND WRITES A REPORT TO CONGRESS SAYING I BELIEVE THIS HAPPENED, THAT'S IN THEIR HANDS, WHETHER TO FILE IMPEACHMENT CHARGES.

TO ME THAT'S MOST LIKELY SCENARIO TO STOP HIM RUNNING AGAIN.

WHETHER THAT HAPPENS IS UP TO GOP IN CONGRESS.

THAT'S -- I DON'T KNOW IF LIKELY SCENARIO.

BUT IF MUELLER'S REPORT CONTAINS ALLEGATIONS OF LAWBROOKING, WILL BE IN CONGRESS'S LAP.

WHAT THEY'RE WILLING TO DO.

JENNIFER ROGERS, THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR JOINING US ON THE PROGRAM AND GIVING US BETTER INSIGHT INTO THE MUELLER INVESTIGATION AND WHAT WE CAN POSSIBLY EXPECT TO HAPPEN NEXT.

OF COURSE.

THANK YOU.

> IN HIS 30-PLUS YEARS IN JOURNALIST, KEITH OLBERMANN IS ONE OF THE MOST THOUGHTFUL VOICED.

MONOLOGUES OFTEN A BIT PROFANE.

FOCUS NOW IS ARGUE LITTLE BIT MOST POWERFUL MAN IN THE WORLD, DONALD TRUMP.

NOT PULLING PUNCHES.

HOST OF PODCAST, 'THE RESISTANCE' TAKES ON TRUMP AS ONLY HE CAN.

ONE OF THE THINGS WE'VE SEEN AND NOT ABLE TO PROCESS IS WHY THE PEOPLE AROUND TRUMP ALLEGEDLY SOLD THIS COUNTRY OUT TO THE RUSSIANS.

NOT WHY HE WOULD HAVE DONE IT.

YOU'VE SEEN HIM FOR NINE MONTHS AND KNOW HE WOULD DO ANYTHING FOR POWER, SPITE OR APPLAUSE.

BUT WHY WOULD THE PEOPLE AROUND HIM DO IT?

AND KEITH'S ANTI-TRUMP COMMENTARIES GARNERED MORE THAN $ 300 MILLION VIEWS.

GATHERED IN A BOOK 'DONALD TRUMP IS EFFING CRAZY.'

20 YEARS AGO WE WERE TOGETHER ON A SET.

WHEN WE STARTED MSNBC.

WE HAVE TO ATONE FOR THAT.

ANOTHER CONVERSATION.

SO MUCH TO TALK TO YOU ABOUT.

START WITH THE BOOK TITLE.

SEEMS UNLIKE YOU TO BE RESERVED AND SUBTLE IN THE TITLE.

TALK ABOUT SOME OF WHAT YOU TALK ABOUT, THEN BIGGER PICTURE QUESTIONS.

I WAS FASCINATED BY IN THE BEGINNING YOU WERE KIND OF CONNED BY DONALD TRUMP WHEN YOU FIRST MET HIM IN 1984.

I WAS.

I ALWAYS THOUGHT HE WAS EDDY HASKELL.

YOU AND I ARE OLD ENOUGH.

'LEAVE IT TO BEAVER,' YOU LOOK GREAT TODAY MRS. CLEAVER.

GUY WHO SUCKED UP TO ADULTS AND BULLIED THE KIDS.

WHAT I DIDN'T KNOW, WORKED WITH HIM -- NOT WITH HIM AT NBC BUT SAW HIM IN THE HALLWAYS.

CONSPIRATORIAL, BIG TALKER.

LIVED IN ONE OF HIS BUILDINGS AND PRESUMABLY HE NEEDED MY APPROVAL MORE THAN THE AVERAGE PERSON OWNING APARTMENT BUT USED TO COME OVER AND SUCK UP TO ME.

SO I THOUGHT, WELL, ALL RIGHT, I WOULDN'T SPEND TIME WITH HIM BUT HE'S BENIGN.

THEN THIS GUY COMES DOWN THE ESCALATOR IN TRUMP TOWER IN 2014 SPOUTING THIS VIRULENT RACIST STUFF.

THINKING ONE OF THESE IS AN ACT.

WHICH ONE?

DAWNED ON ME EITHER IS AN ACT.

THIS IS THE POINT YOU WERE SUGGESTING ABOUT BEGINNING OF THE BOOK.

ON BILL MAHER'S SHOW, EVERY TIME I HAD CONVERSATION WITH HIM IT WAS ABOUT ME.

LOW TONES AND RESPECTFUL.

REALIZE AS I WAS SAYING THIS, BILL IS GOING TO KILL ME, YOU FELL FOR THAT?

CORPORATE SELLOUT.

INSTEAD BILL SAYS THAT'S MY REACTION TOO.

HIS BS DETECTOR IS STRONGER THAN MINE AND GOT CONED TOO.

THIS IS BEYOND HIM AS MULTIPLE PERSONALITIES OR USING PERSONALITY TO SELL HIMSELF OR EDDY HASKELL.

THIS IS IPSYCHOLOGICAL.

I WAS EASY MARK FOR FLATTERY, I DON'T THINK BILL WAS.

MY FIRST MOMENT OF THINKING THERE'S SOMETHING WRONG HERE.

ORIGIN FOR THE SERIES AND BOOK.

WE HAVE LIVED THROUGH AS A NATION TWO IMPEACHMENT PROCEEDINGS, NEITHER RESULTED IN CONVICTION.

IMPEACHMENT MEANS ACCUSATION STAGE, THEN A TRIAL AND SENATE DECIDES.

WOULD HAVE HAD A THIRD IF NIXON -- HAD AN ARTICLE.

EXACTLY.

PEOPLE LOOK AT IMPEACHMENT DIFFERENTLY.

SOME WRITE UP AS ULTIMATE POLITICAL PROCESS, OTHERS AS ULTIMATE DESTRUCTION OF THE POLITICAL PROCESS.

THAT IS A BACKDROP.

DO YOU THINK THAT WHAT -- FROM YOUR PERSPECTIVE HERE, THAT THE IMPEACHMENT OF PRESIDENT TRUMP WOULD BE THE PROPER THING TO DO?

I THINK --

IMPEACHMENT AND REMOVAL?

YEAH.

I THINK SO.

AND I THINK THERE ARE MANY CAUSES FOR THAT.

ONE IS, IT'S NOT JUST THE TITLE OF THE BOOK.

ANYBODY LOOKING AT HIM, DR. COBURN, FORMER SENATOR FROM OKLAHOMA, TOM COBURN SAID HE HAS A PERSONALITY DISORDER.

REPUBLICAN AND MEDICAL DOCTOR.

WHOLE LINE OF INQUIRY ABOUT WHETHER OR NOT HE'S FIT TO FULFILL THE JOB.

AND IF THIS STRAIN IS GOING TO PROVIDE MORE AND MORE EXAMPLES OF ABERRATIONAL BEHAVIOR IN TIME TO COME.

THAT'S ONE ISSUE.

RUSSIA ISSUE IS THE GREAT WILD CARD.

I VARY FROM DAY TO DAY.

HIGH CRIMES AND MISDEMEANORS THAT THE CONSTITUTION TALKS ABOUT.

BUT CONSTITUTION DOESN'T GIVE US A HARD LINE DEFINITION OF REMOVALABLE OFFENSES.

AND DIDN'T WANT TO.

DIDN'T HAVE TO BE CRIMINAL ACT.

COULD BE AS NEFARIOUS AS TRUCKING WITH ANOTHER COUNTRY TO GET YOURSELF ELECTED.

YOU MIGHT REMEMBER THAT THEN REPRESENTATIVE GERALD FORD SAID THAT DEFINITION IS WHATEVER CONGRESS HAPPENS TO BELIEVE IT IS AT THIS MOMENT.

MORE PRACTICALLY, OBSTRUCTION AND JUSTICE AND COVERUP OF THE INVESTIGATION AND INTERFERENCE WITH THE INVESTIGATION, FIRING FBI DIRECTOR.

MEETING WITH TRUMP JUNIOR AND TRUMP SENIOR CHIMING IN ON WHAT THAT STATEMENT WAS WHICH WAS NOT CORRECT.

WHOLE THING OF OBSTRUCTION MAY NEVER HAVE TO DO WITH RUSSIA.

TRUTH WITH RUSSIA WE MAY NEVER KNOW AND MAY NOT NEED TO.

THIRD LINE IS OBSTRUCTION OF JUSTICE.

WHAT WAS NIXON CONVICTED OF IT?

WATERGATE?

NO, CONCEALING AND COVERING IT UP, LEAVING A TRAIL A MILE WIDE.

TO ME, THREE MAIN ASPECTS, WAS THE ELECTION LEGITIMATE/RUSSIA.

HIS OWN HEALTH, AND OBSTRUCTION OF JUSTICE AS WELL.

LIKELY AS NOT, AS YOU KNOW, NIX NI NIXON'S OUSTER WASN'T FOR WATERGATE, BUT END OF THE DAY NOT POLITICAL PARTISANSHIP.

DEMOCRATS CONTROLLED BOTH HOUSES AS NIXON WAS PRESIDENT.

PEOPLE FORGET THAT.

AS WATERGATE WAS BROADCAST EVERY DAY, TIPPING POINT NOT THAT HE BROKEN EVERY LAW AND VIOLATED THE SPIRIT OF THE SYSTEM, IT WAS WE'RE LOOREPUBLICANS LOOKING AT MIDTERMS AND THIS GUY IS GOING TO RUIN IT, LIKELIEST OUTCOME ASIDE FROM PHYSICAL STABILITY, IF HE BECOMES LIABILITY TO MAJORITY OF REPUBLICANS SEEKING ELECTION OR RE-ELECTION IN 2018, THEY WILL TAKE HIM OUT WITH THE HEARTY HELP OF THE DEMOCRATS.

I THINK THAT'S WHY DEMOCRATS ARE HANGING BACK ON ISSUE OF IMPEACHMENT.

ALSO IF HE'S NOT A CLEAR LIABILITY THIS TIME NEXT YEAR AND STILL IN OFFICE OBVIOUSLY, I THINK THE DEMOCRATS WILL TAKE THE HOUSE AND ACT AGAINST HIM.

WE HAVE SO MUCH MORE TO TALK ABOUT, YOU'RE COMING BACK TOMORROW TO CONTINUE THE CONVERSATION.

HOPE YOU JOIN US AS WE CONTINUE THIS CONVERSATION WITH KEITH OLBERMANN.

> HE'S BEEN CALLED THE GODFATHER OF GOTH, 'THE RAVEN' 'THE TELL-TALE HEART.'

ED GR ALAN POE, WORK REMAINS MANDATORY READING ACROSS THE COUNTRY.

HIS OWN LIFE NEARLY AS DARK AS THE TALES.

DIED UNDER MYSTERIOUS CIRCUMSTANCES JUST BEFORE HALLOWEEN.

CAUSE NEVER DETERMINED.

ON PBS 'AMERICAN MASTERS' IS BRINGING POE BACK TO LIFE.

'EDGAR ALLAN POE:BURIED ALIVE.'

HERE'S A SNEAK PEEK.

TRUE, NERVOUS, VERY DREADFULLY NERVOUS I HAVE BEEN AND AM.

BUT WHY WILL YOU SAY THAT I AM MAD?

NARRATOR GRABS YOU IN THE FIRST STATEMENT.

MAD?

PEOPLE SAY I'M MAD?

I'M NOT MAD.

HE'S CLEARLY MAD.

TELLING YOU STORY THAT'S MAD AND SANE AT THE SAME TIME.

POE IS TALKING ABOUT SUBJECT THAT MAKES IT SO UNIVERSELY INTERESTING.

EXCEPT FOR SEX YOU CAN'T GET ANYTHING MORE HUMAN AND FUNDAMENTAL THAN FEAR.

POE WANTED AMERICANS TO UNDERSTAND WHAT WAS STRANGE ABOUT THEIR OWN CULTURE.

HE SAW THAT STRANGENESS, THE STRANGENESS THAT MOST PEOPLE DIDN'T SEE.

AND WE'RE DELIGHTED TO HAVE JOINING US NOW, WRITER AND DIRECTOR OF 'EDGAR ALLAN POE: BURIED ALIVE,' ERIC STANGE.

WHAT DREW YOU TO POE?

IT'S LONG STORY BUT CAN TELL YOU SHORT VERSION.

GOT A PHONE CALL FROM GUY WHO WANTED TO MAKE A FILM ABOUT POE.

HAD NO MONEY, WASN'T A FILMMAKER, KEPT CALLING AND CALLING.

LIVING ON SCOTT SOCIAL SECURITY DIDN'T KNOW HOW TO DO THIS BUT HAD PASSION TO MAKE THE FILM.

I BEGAN TO WORK WITH HIM, TOGETHER WE RAISED MONEY AND GOT THE THING UNDER WAY.

IN HORRIBLE POE-LIKE TURN OF EVENTS HE DIED OF HEART ATTACK BEFORE WE COULD GET THROUGH IT.

SAD.

HE WAS SO DRIVEN.

I INHERITED THE PROJECT AND KEPT IT GOING AND GOT IT FINISHED.

FORMAT IS DIFFERENT AND F FASCINATING.

HOW DESCRIBE IT?

DRAMAIZATION OF A DOCUMENTARY.

ANY DOCUMENTARY DRAWS ON EVIDENCE, USE WRITTEN WORD.

AND KEEP IT USEFUL TO THE HISTORICAL RECORD.

DON'T WANT TO INVENT THINGS WE DON'T KNOW WERE SAID, DONE OR HAPPENED.

BUT DOING SOMETHING FROM PREPHOTOGRAPHIC ERA, YOU HAVE TO FIND A WAY TO MAKE IT VISUAL.

AND I LIKE WORKING WITH ACTORS.

DONE IT A FEW TIMES.

I LIKE TO CALL IT DRAMATIZED DOCUMENTARY.

USING DOCUMENTARY EVIDENCE BUT TURNING INTO DRAMA BASED ON THE WRITTEN WORD.

TWO THINGS I FIND FASCINATING AMONG OTHERS IS WHAT DRAWS A FILMMAKER TO PROJECT AND TITLES.

BURIED ALIVE?

GOT A LOT OF, I HOPE, METAPHORICAL RESONANCE.

POE LIKED STORIES OF PEOPLE BURIED ALIVE.

AND IN 19th CENTURY, COFFIN MAKERS MADE COFFINS WITH BELLS.

SCARY THEY HAD TO BUILD THAT INTO IN CASE YOU WOKE UP.

NOT SURE THEY EVER WORKED BUT THAT WAS IDEA.

HE WROTE SEVERAL STORIES, INCLUDING 'THE PREMATURE BURIAL.'

BUT POE LIVED UNDER BURDENS.

BURIED IN DEBT.

REPUTATION BURIED UNDER MISAPPREHENSIONS AND MISREPUTATIONS.

HE WAS IN A SENSE BURIED UNDER HIS BEHAVIOR.

TROUBLED LIFE.

WASN'T THE DRUG ADDICT AND CRAZY PERSON THAT MYTH WOULD HAVE YOU BELIEVE BUT DID LABOR UNDER ENORMOUS BURDENS.

THAT'S METAPHORICAL MEANING.

WHY DO YOU THINK THAT MISPERCEPTION HAS CONTINUED TODAY, MADMAN, DRUG ADDLED CRAZY GENIUS?

THAT'S A GREAT QUESTION AND ONE WE TRY TO ADDRESS IN THE FICHLT IT'S DIFFICULT.

PART IS POE'S FAULT.

IN HIS LIFETIME HE CREATED A LITERARY PERSONA, NEEDED TO SELL STORIES.

HARD TO MAKE A LIVING.

CONTRIBUTED TO THE IMAGE?

HE HELPED CREATE THE IMAGE.

FIVE DAG GARE OTYPES OF HIM, ALL MOODY AND WE ALL KNOW THAT FACE.

THAT'S LIVED ON.

I THINK SOMETHING MORE, ANY CULTURE OR SOCIETY NEEDS ITS BOOGIEMEN, OUR VILLAINS OR SCARY FIGURES, SAFE BUT SCARY.

POE IS WELL-KNOWN WRITER BUT DOES AROUSE FRIGHTENING FEELINGS.

WAY TO VISIT THE DARK SIDE WITHOUT GOING TOO FAR.

I THINK PEOPLE RESPOND TO THAT GENERATION AFTER GENERATION.

LAST QUESTION FOR YOU, THERE'S SO MUCH THAT VIEWERS ARE GOING TO LEARN FROM THEM THEY DIDN'T KNOW.

I DIDN'T KNOW A LOT AND I THOUGHT I KNEW A DECENT AMOUNT ABOUT POE.

WHAT DID YOU LEARN?

WHAT DID YOU FIND THAT SURPRISED YOU MOST ONCE YOU GOT INTO THE PROJECT?

ON PURELY FACTUAL LEVEL, BIGGEST FACT WAS HE INVENTED MODERN DETECTIVE STORY.

I SHOULD HAVE KNOWN IT.

NOT WHAT YOU KNOW HIM FOR BUT YEAH.

EVEN ARTHUR CONAN DOYLE, WRITER OF SHERLOCK HOLMES CREDITED HIM FOR DOING THAT.

HE WAS SO INVOLVED IN THE LITERARY CULTURE OF HIS TIME AND HELPING CREATE AMERICAN LITERATURE OF THE 1840s.

I THOUGHT OF HIM AS OUTSIDER ON DAK EDGES OF LITERATURE BUT HE WAS IN THE THICK OF IT, LITERARY CRITIC, WRITER AND EDITOR OF MANY THINGS.

HE HELPED CREATE THAT LITERARY MOMENT WHICH BECAME THE BLOSSOMING OF AMERICAN LITERATURE.

THIS IS A MARVELOUS AND COMPELLING, REVEALING LOOK AT MAN WE PROBABLY THOUGHT WE KNEW.

TURNS OUT WE DIDN'T, WHAT YOU TEACH US IS MAYBE MORE INTERESTING THAN WHAT WE THOUGHT WE DO.

IT'S MARVELOUS FILM.

PREMIERS ON OCTOBER 30th ON PBS.

CHECK YOUR LOCAL LISTINGS.

Announcer: FUNDING FOR THIS PROGRAM WAS PROVIDED BY --

Funders

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