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American Masters, Walter Winchell: The Power of Gossip
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American Masters, Walter Winchell: The Power of Gossip

Walter Winchell, The Power of Gossip

Tuesday, Oct. 20, at 9 p.m.

Repeats Wednesday, Oct. 21, at 2 a.m. and Sunday, Oct. 25, at 5 p.m.
Also airs on Fusion on Saturday, Oct. 24, at 4 p.m. and Tuesday, Oct. 27, at 7 p.m.

Trace the life and career of syndicated columnist, radio news commentator and television host Walter Winchell, who pioneered the fast-paced, gossip-driven, politically charged media culture that dominates today.

At the height of his career, Winchell had a combined print and radio audience of 50 million and the power to make or break careers. He became the most feared and admired man in America, a man who transformed entertainment journalism and championed “Mr. and Mrs. America” in his daily columns and Sunday night radio program. Decades later, an alliance with Senator Joseph McCarthy and feuds with Josephine Baker and Ed Sullivan turned his audience against him and forced him into obscurity.

Featuring Stanley Tucci as Winchell and narrated by Whoopi Goldberg, this AMERICAN MASTERS documentary breathes new life into Winchell’s original newspaper columns and broadcast scripts, drawing on rare recordings and a recently digitized collection of his work in the Billy Rose Theatre Division at The New York Public Library for the Performing Arts.