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Oscar nominees include pair of docs debuting on PBS in February
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Oscar-nominated film "Minding the Gap" will air Feb. 18 on PBS.
Courtesy Bing Liu

By Chip Chandler — Producer

Two critically acclaimed documentaries that will debut on PBS next month were nominated today for Oscars.

Hale County This Morning, This Evening will debut on Independent Lens at 9 p.m. Feb. 11 as part of a slate of Black History Month programs in February. Minding the Gap will debut on POV at 8 p.m. Feb. 18.

Also nominated for best documentary feature are Free SoloOf Fathers and Sons and RBG.

Additionally, Marshall Curry's A Night at the Garden, which premiered on the PBS documentary series POV Shorts and, was nominated for Best Documentary Short Subject.

Hale County, the directorial debut of photographer RaMell Ross, looks at the lives of two young African American men from rural Alabama over the course of five years.

Daniel Collins attends college in search of opportunity while Quincy Bryant becomes a father to an energetic son in this open-ended, poetic film without a traditional narrative.

Distilling life to its essence, the film invites the audience to experience the mundane and the monumental, birth and death, the quotidian and the sublime.

These moments combine to communicate the region’s deep culture and provide glimpses of the complex ways the African American community’s collective image is integrated into America’s visual imagination.

Minding the Gap, the directorial debut of filmmaker Bing Liu, offers an intimate look into friendships initiated via a passion for skateboarding and cemented by shared experience.

The resulting bonds are as strong as any between members of a conventional family. This captivating coming-of-age story tackles topics like domestic violence, relationships and masculinity, all while its three central subjects approach adulthood.

This documentary chronicles the lives of the filmmaker’s friends from a small town outside Chicago. Liu artfully compiles clips from their early teens up to the present day, following each of them through every step of their lives.

In other Oscar news, the Mister Rogers documentary Won't You Be My Neighbor? missed out on a widely expected nomination. It will air at 7 p.m. Feb. 9 in a one-night-only screening on Panhandle PBS.

The Favourite, which is still screening in Amarillo, and Roma, which is available on Netflix, led the Oscar field with 10 nominations each.

A Star Is Born, the Bradley Cooper / Lady Gaga remake of the classic Hollywood story, and Vice, director Adam McKay's snarky biopic about Dick Cheney, both received eight nominations. Vice is still screening in Amarillo, and A Star Is Born made its digital debut last week.

Black Panther, the first super-hero movie ever nominated for Best Picture, scored seven nominations, and BlacKkKlansman picked up six nominations, including Spike Lee's first-ever nomination for best director. Both are available now on digital and disc.

Click here for a full list of Oscar nominees. The 91st annual Oscars will air Feb. 24 on ABC. 




Chip Chandler is a producer for Panhandle PBS and a member of GALECA. He can be contacted at, at @chipchandler1 on Twitter and on Facebook.