Between the Wars: 1918-1941 Documentary Series Overview (1978)


History Documentary hosted by Eric Sevareid, published by PBS in 1978.

Repackaged as “The Road to World War II” (2011) by Questar, Inc. and available on DVD in 2011. Also known as The Road to Pearl Harbour, 1919-1941 (alternative title, US).

Series explores the political and diplomatic events and crises between World War I and World War II.

Refer to America Goes to War: The Homefront in World War II (1990), which can be considered a continuation of this series.


Documentary producer Alan Landsburg Productions created this series of 16 programs, with post-production at Neiman-Tillar Associates, about the history of diplomacy from 1919-1941 and how the world failed to learn the lessons of World War I which inevitably led to World War II.

This classic series follows the events that sparked the greatest conflict of the century, capturing the drama, the excitement and the ideological juxtapositions of these crucial years. Former CBS News correspondent and commentator Eric Sevareid, one of the world’s most respected figures in journalism, presents this extraordinary series featuring stunning original newsreels, soundtracks, and rare archival footage. While America enjoyed itself in the Roaring Twenties, the world was changing.

It was the era of Lucky Lindy, bootleg, Babe Ruth, Valentino and assembly-line Fords. It was also the time of market collapse, Klan meetings, demagogues abroad, Red Scares at home and bread lines. The best of times, the worst of times, and the times in which the United States reluctantly moved centre stage.

Between the Wars is an innovative 16-part series that examines this crucial time as it progressed from the Armistice in 1918 to the attack on Pearl Harbour in 1941. Tour the globe and revisit all the crucial sites from the US, Japan, Russia and Europe. See and hear Hitler, Mussolini, Stalin, Churchill and Roosevelt like never before. Host Eric Sevareid: He was there! Pioneering newsman Eric Sevareid was, for many, the voice of World War II. He was the first correspondent to report the French surrender to Germany, and was in the thick of combat throughout the Second World War. Uniquely qualified and knowledgeable, Eric Sevareid delivers the intensity and authenticity of someone who was present at every turn.

Between the Wars: 1918-1941 Series

Production & Filming Details

  • Narrator(s):
    • Eric Sevareid.
  • Director(s):
    • Anthony Potter … (1 episode, 1978).
    • Scott Garen … (unknown episodes).
  • Producer(s):
    • Anthony Potter … producer (10 episodes, 1978).
    • William T. Cartwright … producer (3 episodes, 1978).
    • Michael D. Ornstein … producer (3 episodes, 1978).
    • Scott Garen … producer (2 episodes, 1978).
    • William Kronick … producer (2 episodes, 1978).
    • Charles Musser … producer (2 episodes, 1978).
    • Alan Landsburg … executive producer (1 episode, 1978).
    • David J. Eagle … series associate producer (1978) (unknown episodes).
  • Writer(s):
    • Anthony Potter … (14 episodes, 1978).
  • Music:
    • William Loose … (2 episodes, 1978).
    • Jack K. Tillar … (2 episodes, 1978).
  • Cinematography:
    • Tom Hurwitz … (3 episodes, 1978).
    • John Murphy … (1 episode, 1978).
  • Editor(s):
    • Charles Musser … (3 episodes, 1978).
    • William T. Cartwright … (2 episodes, 1978).
    • Michael D. Ornstein … (2 episodes, 1978).
    • Scott Garen … (1 episode, 1978).
  • Production:
    • Alan Landsburg Productions.
  • Distributor(s):
    • PBS.
  • Release Date: 05 April 1978.
  • Rating: Unknown.
  • Running Time: 30 minutes (per episode).
  • Country: US.
  • Language: English.

Video Link(s)

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