Hollywood heavyweights Brad Pitt, Tom Hanks, and Edward Norton are among the producers for an upcoming TV miniseries dramatizing the journey of American explorers Lewis and Clark. The six-hour series will debut on HBO and stars Casey Affleck as Meriwether Lewis and Matthias Schoenaerts as William Clark. 

Casey Affleck (IMDB.com)
Casey Affleck (IMDB.com)

In the early 19th century, US President Thomas Jefferson commissioned Lewis and Clark to explore the lands acquired via the Louisiana Purchase of 1803. From 1804-1806, the two men led their “Corps of Discovery” to survey the new territory now claimed by America, which stretched from the Mississippi River to the western Rockies. 

Matthias Schoenaerts (IMDB.com)
Matthias Schoenaerts (IMDB.com)

While this land was unknown to Americans, it was known and held by numerous Indigenous groups who acknowledged each other’s use of a given area. Positive relations with those Indigenous peoples would be critical to the success of Lewis and Clark, if they were to receive information and supplies along the way. That inter-cultural communication was most famously exemplified in the person of Sacagawea, a Lemhi Shoshone woman who acted as guide and interpreter for the Americans. The expedition reached the Pacific Ocean in November of 1805, returning to St. Louis, Missouri, in September 1806.

HBO’s Lewis and Clark is expected to premiere in 2016, with the filming taking place this year in Alberta, Vancouver, BC, and the US state of Georgia. The series will consist of six episodes.

(Copyright – Chad Beharriell)

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