Frontline's The Choice 2016 Coming September 27
Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump are two of the most polarizing presidential candidates in modern history.
Now, FRONTLINE goes behind the headlines Trump and Clinton have generated to investigate what has shaped these two candidates, where they came from, how they lead and why they want to take on one of the most difficult jobs imaginable.
On September 27, FRONTLINE presents the two-hour special, The Choice 2016, an interwoven investigative biography of Clinton and Trump that draws on dozens of interviews from those who know the candidates best — friends and family, advisors and adversaries — as well as authors, journalists, and political insiders.
What emerges is a deeply reported narrative arc of both candidates’ lives, side by side, with trustworthy journalism and powerful new insights at a moment when voters are being bombarded with conflicting partisan stories about each candidate.
From veteran FRONTLINE filmmaker Michael Kirk, who leads one of the most acclaimed investigative teams in broadcast journalism and has made three prior installments of FRONTLINE’s election-year series The Choice, the documentary will also be available the night of the broadcast debut at pbs.org/frontline.
“Both Clinton and Trump have been public figures for most of their lives — in fact, they’ve been active in public life on television for decades,” says Kirk. “But we’ve undertaken the most ambitious television biographies of these candidates ever created, going beyond the headlines they’ve generated and the personas they’ve created to explore what has made them who they are as people and as politicians.”
From their childhoods, to their college experiences, to their tumultuous careers, The Choice 2016 investigates formative moments in the lives of Donald Trump, who has challenged the establishment at every turn, and Hillary Clinton, who has become the first female presidential nominee.
“Both candidates have high unfavorability ratings, and the bitter divide in this country makes it incredibly hard for people to understand how others could support the candidate on the opposite side,” says Kirk. “After watching The Choice 2016, no matter where your allegiance lies, you’ll come away with a new and richer understanding of who the opposing candidates are, and how and why he or she has reached this point.”
In the runup to the premiere of The Choice 2016, FRONTLINE will also debut a series of documentary shorts on its digital platforms taking viewers inside key moments in each candidate’s life. Together, the documentary and these short films will provide fresh, revelatory portraits, spanning decades, that will give viewers a new understanding of the two people who are fighting to lead America – and will be essential viewing for every American looking to make an informed choice on November 8, 2016.
The Choice 2016 premieres Tuesday, September 27, at 9/8c on PBS (check local listings) and will stream in full, for free, online at pbs.org/frontline.