BAND OF BROTHERS and THE PACIFIC’s Companion Miniseries A Go!

By Jef Dinsmore on Jan 19, 2013 to Band of Brothers, Pacific & The Mighty 8th

BAND OF BROTHERS and THE PACIFIC now have a companion miniseries in – “MASTERS OF THE AIR.” Note that no official title for the cinematic Mastersof TheAIrproduction has been given as the tile in quotes here is in reference to the film’s source material. Specifically the non-fiction work used as reference is Donald Miller’s Masters of the Air: America’s Bomber Boys Who Fought the Air War Against Nazi Germany.

The miniseries is said to explore the aerial wars through the eyes of enlisted men of the Eighth Air Force – known as the men of The Mighty Eighth. As was reflected in our previous post of this topic this installment would round out covering the major armed forces involved in the sweeping military action. The historical tome is described as follows:

 

Masters of the Air” is the deeply personal story of the American bomber boys in World War II who brought the war to Hitler’s doorstep. With the narrative power of fiction, Donald Miller takes readers on a harrowing ride through the fire-filled skies over Berlin, Hanover, and Dresden and describes the terrible cost of bombing for the German people.

Fighting at 25,000 feet in thin, freezing air that no warriors had ever encountered before, bomber crews battled new kinds of assaults on body and mind. Air combat was deadly but intermittent: periods of inactivity and anxiety were followed by short bursts of fire and fear. Unlike infantrymen, bomber boys slept on clean sheets, drank beer in local pubs, and danced to the swing music of Glenn Miller’s Air Force band, which toured U.S. air bases in England. But they had a much greater chance of dying than ground soldiers. In 1943, an American bomber crewman stood only a one-in-five chance of surviving his tour of duty, twenty-five missions. The Eighth Air Force lost more men in the war than the U.S. Marine Corps.

The bomber crews were an elite group of warriors who were a microcosm of America — white America, anyway. (African-Americans could not serve in the Eighth Air Force except in a support capacity.) The actor Jimmy Stewart was a bomber boy, and so was the “King of Hollywood,” Clark Gable. And the air war was filmed by Oscar-winning director William Wyler and covered by reporters like Andy Rooney and Walter Cronkite, all of whom flew combat missions with the men. The Anglo-American bombing campaign against Nazi Germany was the longest military campaign of World War II, a war within a war. Until Allied soldiers crossed into Germany in the final months of the war, it was the only battle fought inside the German homeland.

Strategic bombing did not win the war, but the war could not have been won without it. American airpower destroyed the rail facilities and oil refineries that supplied the German war machine. The bombing campaign was a shared enterprise: the British flew under the cover of night while American bombers attacked by day; a technique that British commanders thought was suicidal.

“Masters of the Air” is a story, as well, of life in wartime England and in the German prison camps, where tens of thousands of airmen spent part of the war. It ends with a vivid description of the grisly hunger marches captured airmen were forced to make near the end of the war through the country their bombs destroyed.

Drawn from recent interviews, oral histories, and American, British, German, and other archives, Masters of the Air is an authoritative, deeply moving account of the world’s first and only bomber war.

If you are inclined to read this Douglas Miller piece for yourself here is the convenient Amazon link provided.

HBOWatch had posted back in 10.12 that HBO was in hopes of another installment of the sweeping and powerful history found in WWII’s story. Why not, after the first two special presentations garnered so many accolades and awards? And, now Amblin Television and Playtone Productions have taken the preliminary measures to have the Air Force’s efforts honored in film. Under the helm of Spielberg HanksSteven Spielberg and Tom Hanks the production is likely to offer the same approach and tone as the previous works and air on HBO in a series of ten episodes.

Graham Yost, of FX’s Justified, who wrote a number of scripts for both previous miniseries, just recently told The Hollywood Reporter that he was eager to reteam with the production staff to scribe for the third installment as well. He offered this amusing quote: “If they wanted to do a miniseries about proctology, I would snap on the gloves and go.”

This is big news for HBO and its audience. Once again, with top-notch quality, our favorite premium channel will offer the best entertainment. Now, it will take a lot of time and money (THE PACIFIC cost over $200 million to create) to get this production to air but, you cannot rush perfection. HBOWatch will be covering any news that surfaces about the upcoming third installment for now called MASTERS OF THE AIR.

 


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  • hey

    I hope they make one about the Navy. There were alot of great Navy battles.

    • Barry Morgan

      Me too!

  • johnny appleseed

    Terry Collins has to go. Lagares should be playing everyday. Chris and Eric Young are average players. Lagares has the potential to be a great player as we already see that in his defense. He batting 300, and how can we know if he can maintain his offense unless he plays everyday. Also, how does Flores get brought up and now hasn’t played a lick because Tejada had two hits on the game Flores was sick. Let the kids play. Flores and Lagares could be our future center fielder and shortstop for the next 10-15 years. Tejada will be in triple A by the end of the season and Chris young won’t be on the team next year. Eric Young is at best a 4th outfielder and a good back up option if someone is injured or needs a day off. If these are Terry Collins decisions then he needs to go for a manager that realizes we are playing for the future. ANd we won’t know what the future is unless we let Flores and Lagares playing time everyday.

  • BJOSEPHS

    my dad was a pilot for the 305th bomb group 366 bomb squadron. flew a B17 called the aint misbehavin out of Chelveston in 1943 – 44

  • This generations’s Vet

    The companion to thePacific would be about the 5th Army Air Force, not the 8th. Let’s keep things accurate. Many fought and died all over, but the 8th was EUCOM and the 5th was PACOM. My grandfather was a Jolly Roger in the 5th in the Pacific during WWII. Bombs Away!!!!

  • Joseph

    They absolutely have to make this production! America and her allies at their finest hour. The younger generation has no idea of today has no idea just how good they have it. My grandfather has a shirt that says ” If you’re reading this,thank a teacher. If you’re reading it in English, thank a vet!” I agree, and I feel they all deserve to be recognized in film

  • Steve Dixon

    Quote: “The miniseries is said to explore the aerial wars through the eyes of enlisted men of the Eighth Air Force – known as the men of The Mighty Eighth. As was reflected in our previous post of this topic this installment would round out covering the major armed forces involved in the sweeping military action.”
    What about the U.S. Navy or was their contribution minor? I don’t think so!

    • Martigan

      The Pacific…

      • Chuckie Harris

        Actually, while The Pacific did show a few naval elements in it, I wouldn’t say it was about the Navy. That would be like saying that the air forces already got their due during BoB because you saw a few planes (mostly C-47’s, but also some medium bombers in the Market Garden episode and some random fighters throughout). I would hope that the Navy would be better highlighted at some other point, as would the Coast Guard. After all, all 5 branches of the military were heavily involved in this global conflict. One other (admitidly picky) detail: the bomber war wasn’t the longest military campaign of the war; The Battle of the Atlantic was. After all, even if America’s real involvement there didn’t begin until after Pearl Harbor and Hitler’s declaration of war on the US, they had already gotten orders to ‘shoot on sight’ any German u-boats they saw due to the fact that there had already been a string of ‘accidents’ with the u-boats already shooting at US ships despite their official neutrality.

  • Rick Wearing

    I like the Mighty Eighth! They should call my Dad he flew 35 missions as the tailgunner on the 5 Grand out of Snetterton Heath.Guys,Guys,Lets not fight among ourselves all of the boys sacrificed and they did it together.

    • andy

      i live 10 miles from snetterton id love to know more about your dads time there

      • Rick Wearing

        Andy,My Dad said one of his best memories was going off into the woods and shooting a rabbit or two and making a nice meal.I guess they ran wild in the area.

  • Malcolm – London

    Let’s just hope that due acknowledgement is made of the contribution and sacrifice of RAF Bomber Command in this and it is not, as so often from Hollywood, a portrayal as a US only war with everybody else as incompetent bit players. (Band of Brothers fell into that trap at times). With all due respect to the 8th Army Airforce and the awful toll they paid in young lives, Bomber Command’s war lasted even longer!

  • Robbie Moraes

    Sounds like crap. I already saw the best WWII Documentry, THE WORLD AT WAR which aired on the BBC in 1972.

  • Andrew White

    I just have one thing to say: Guys…I know it’s expensive but…please use REAL AIRPLANES! You can not capture this story using CGI.

    • http://hbowatch.com/ Jacob Klein

      Highly doubt that this will be the case but I hope they use them for most of the close-up shots. Mostly a safety thing, I would think! No one can fly those 70 year old machines these days!

      • Ed Xander

        There are currently 10 B-17s in flying condition (1 in the UK, the rest in the US) not to mention all the other aircraft flying across the world for even earlier. There are several planes currently flying which are over 100 years old

  • Gelsomino Pasqualino

    Ah, finally something from Hollywood really worth looking forward to! My fingers are crossed that this production sees the light of day and at least meets – if not surpasses – the bar for quality set by BoB.

  • Sabb

    It should be Eighth ARMY Air Force, not Eighth Air Force, fellas.

    • Nathan

      Actually, it’s the Eighth Army Air Forces, fella.

      • Sabb

        Nope, it’s singular, Nathan: Eighth Army Air Force

    • Andrew

      Actually, the correct war time term that was used was the Eighth Bomber Command. The term Eight Air Force didn’t come into existence until the post-war years and it is a very common term used among the veterans. But the the correct war time term that was used was the Eighth Bomber Command. You can hear it mentioned in war time films and in period documents.

      • Wade Meyers

        “VIII Bomber Command” was redesignated “Eighth Air Force” in Feb 1944.

  • davehg

    band of brothers was the benchmark for any miniseries as far as im concerened.loved the character development.cinematography and the story itself.i felt connected to the characters pretty quickly .hbo should do as many miniseries as they possibly can with this crew and im glad to hear about this new one.

  • jfcjr Danang “69

    I guess I won’t live long enough to see a mini series on Vietnam??????

  • Anthony from Belgium

    “Band of brothers” and “the pacific” were amazing pieces of television, bringing stories that should be told. It’s fantastic to hear that another series is in the making. Can’t wait …

  • Jef Dinsmore

    I realize this is early news but NO ONE is excited about this production?

    • http://hbowatch.com/ Jacob Klein

      We actually saw a lot of action on Twitter with this story. I know people are excited out there. Band of Brothers was a HUGE success for HBO. It’s also a big service to the country/soldiers IMO. Always good to relive the costs of war.









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