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ANCESTORS

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Director << Behind the Scenes

Matt Whitaker Matt Whitaker was raised in a tiny town in Northern California, the youngest of seven children. Being the baby of the family, he was able to avoid any need to choose a "responsible" profession, and therefore decided to study film. Much to everyone's surprise, including his own, people began to pay him to make movies (can you imagine?). So far so good.

Most of his experience has been in narrative film, so crafting a television series like Ancestors has, at times, been an interesting challenge for him. But since both his parents are avid genealogists - and family legend has it that Auntie Mabel has done all the family history anyway! - he felt uniquely qualified to dive blindly into a topic with which he had very little personal experience. Thankfully, he was surrounded by a team of experts who "knew their stuff." And along the way, he found that the world is full of professional and amateur genealogists who will freely and gladly share all they know about the topic (and a few things they can only surmise).

Over the past year and a half, as he has been immersed (or buried) in Ancestors, he has come to learn a great deal about the incredible world of family history. Although he has occasionally been heard to smugly proclaim that he could probably hold his own now in any circle of genealogical discussion, he admits that he still has a hard time loading a roll of microfilm onto the reader. But the main thing he learned in meeting with genealogists all around the world is this: genealogists are good people. Period. Sure, there may be an exception here and there, but he never found one.

 
 
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-Behind the Scenes-

Things We Learned

Executive Producer-
John L. Reim

Executive Producer-
Marcy Brown

Producer-
Craig Steiner

Director-
Matt Whitaker

Host-
Scott Wilkinson

Instructional Design-
Jim Tyrrell

Other Team
Members

 

     
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