Executive Producer Edward McGurn discussing The Long Road Home.
December 19th 2017 was a night to remember; literally. The entire night was not only about commemorating the time and effort put into making National Geographic’s short series The Long Road Home, but also the soldiers and their family who were affected by the war. On that Tuesday night Nat Geo hosted a luxurious screening for the final episode of their new narrative series at Stella Barra in Hollywood. At the event Edward McGurn one of the show executive producers got the chance to speak on his thoughts and experiences making the show.
According to McGurn the show had a long road (no pun intended) in front of it when he first started working on it. “this is actually eight or nine years in the making for me. So we started developing this as a movie originally and I started working with Mikko's (show runner) way back when we were building this as a script and then about two years ago we were sitting in a room and we just came to the realization like this this is a mini series”
In regards of adapting the script from a feature to a mini series McGurn said “the medium is so much more conducive to telling these giant stories [...] the climates really changed from eight years ago when it was impossible to do a mini series at this budget[...] so it took a little time for the market to mature and to be able to tell this story”
McGurn furthers the discussion by going on to say how the evolution of television and streaming services helped make the show possible. “going back the five channels that you had and then you had movies and[...] go to the movie theaters to see movies and they were very separate mediums and then when you look at the evolution of it cable multiple channels you know the first first VHS is then DVDs and different ways of watching movies and I think today the right way to look at it is that we live in an entertainment ecosystem [...] and this show lives lives on live TV like we're going to watch tonight and then it also lives on Hulu and on Amazon and I think this ecosystem is format agnostic”
Here furthers to say “a symptom of that is also that you know everybody's you know disconnecting from cable [...] I don't have cable anymore I choose what I want within this ecosystem”. McGurn also touches on a set back that comes with this current ecosystem “I think last year was either 550 or 750 shows in production[...]one of the critics said I've gotten to the point where I cannot finish watching all the shows I want to watch I cannot” Despite the evolution of television there is still a massive market for original and adapted content.
The Long Road Home provides its audience with a faithful adaptation of Martha Raddatz book of the same title. It tells the stories of "Black Sunday” where a First Cavalry Division who were in Sadr City in 2004 when they came under a surprise attack. Although, the season is over it will be on streaming services soon.