Grant, which aired earlier this year during Memorial Day weekend on the History Channel, is now available to take home on DVD.
While Ron Chernow’s Alexander Hamilton biography inspired a musical, his definitive Ulysses S. Grant biography, Grant, led to a three-part miniseries. Chernow produced the miniseries alongside Appian Way’s Jennifer Davisson and Leonardo DiCaprio. Like several History Channel documentary miniseries, they weave in dramatic recreations, interviews, and archival images. The main focus is Grant leading the Union troops during the Civil War and then serving as president during Reconstruction. Grant also made sure that freed slaves had their right to vote protected even if people were against it.
When Grant died, the former American president was among the most famous people on the planet. But since that time, what has become of his legacy? Even before his presidency, he garnered major controversy with an anti-Semitic order expelling Jews from portions of Kentucky, Tennessee, and Mississippi. Professor Jonathan D. Sarna covers the entire controversy and postscript in his book, When General Grant Expelled The Jews. I highly recommend it even though it’s been almost a decade since I first read the hardcover edition. I should note that Sarna’s book preceded Chernow’s bio by a few years.
On camera interviews include biographer Ron Chernow, retired United States Army General and former Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) director David Petraeus, journalist Ta-Nehisi Coates and professor of English at West Point Elizabeth Samet.
Executive produced by Academy Award winner Leonardo DiCaprio, Grant tells the remarkable and quintessentially American story of a humble man who overcomes incredible obstacles to rise to the highest ranks of power and save the nation not once, but twice. This complete three-part miniseries seamlessly blends expert commentary, dramatic reenactments, and beautifully enhanced archival imagery to reveal the true legacy of the unlikely hero who led the nation during its greatest tests: the Civil War and Reconstruction.
DIRECTOR: Malcolm Venville
FEATURING: Ron Chernow, David Petraeus, Ta-Nehisi Coates, Elizabeth Samet
CAST: Justin Salinger, Francis Chouler, and Carel Nel