Ken Burns and WETA are pleased to partner for HENRY DAVID THOREAU, the first-ever feature-length documentary on this American original. The film, slated for PBS national broadcast in 2026, is produced by Ewers Brothers Productions and co-produced by Ken Burns and WETA.
The film will explore the life, writings, and revelations of Thoreau to present a deeper understanding of the intellectual, social, and cultural currents of his time and their lasting impact on American history and thought. Taking advantage of new historical findings, the filmmakers will explore concepts at the core of Thoreau’s work including the health of our planet, justice for all human beings, and the importance of standing up for one’s beliefs in the public square – all of which have immense cultural significance today.
This film will benefit from the reach and credibility of PBS, with 330+ stations across the country reaching millions with free programming. This multi-platform project will include online and social media content, national and local events, and standards-based lesson plans for K-12 students.