North and South

North and South

Movie: North and South
Director: Richard T. Heffron
Produced by: Warner Brothers Television, Wolper Productions
Released By:
MPAA Rating:

The expensively mounted miniseries North and South was originally telecast in six two-hour installments between November 3 and 10, 1985. Four screenwriters–Douglas Heyes, Paul F. Edwards, Kathleen A. Shelley, Patricia Green–were called upon to fashion a workable script from John Jakes’ sprawling best-seller. The story covers the two decades prior to the Civil War, beginning in 1842. Real-life historical events are filtered through the eyes of two rival clans: the Mains, a South Carolina plantation-owning family, and the Hazards, a family of Pennsylvania industrialists. While top billing goes to Kirstie Alley as “Northern Belle” Virgilia Hazard, most of the footage is devoted to the fluctuating friendship between Orry Main and George Hazard. The huge guest-star cast includes Gene Kelly, Elizabeth Taylor, Leslie-Anne Down, David Carradine, Robert Mitchum, Jean Simmons, Hal Holbrook and Johnny Cash. The recipient of seven Emmy nominations, the 561-minute North and South was filmed back to back with its equally lengthy sequel, North and South, Book II.

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