Winner 2004

Rwanda—Do Scars Ever Fade?

Bill Brummel Productions for The History Channel

In 1994, the small African country of Rwanda was awash in blood. Extremists in the majority Hutu controlled government organized a systematic genocide of Rwanda’s minority Tutsi population. In just 100 days, more than 800,000 were murdered—an estimated seventy-five percent of Rwanda’s Tutsis. The atrocity was halted ten years ago, but for Rwandans, the ordeal does not yet have an ending. Today, the physical scars sustained by survivors are fading, but the emotional scars still remain. Rwanda—Do Scars Ever Fade?, narrated by Jeffrey Wright, is an in-depth journalistic report and historical examination of a terrible atrocity—but it is also much more. From the first day of pre-production, producers, including supervising producer William Povletich, coordinating producer Deborah Nelson, and production coordinator Amy Korngiebel, sought to set the program apart from others by putting a human face on the genocide. Shot on location over a period of five weeks by director of photography Richard Pendleton, producers documented harrowing personal stories of both Tutsi survivors and Hutu perpetrators. These stories offer a microcosm of the genocide, and the difficulties of balancing justice with reconciliation. Co-written by executive producer Bill Brummel and producer/editor Paul Freedman, this program documented a chapter of history almost impossible to comprehend. By allowing most of the story to unfold through the first person narratives of Rwandans who lived through the tragedy, Rwanda—Do Scars Ever Fade? presented viewers with an intimate look at one of mankind’s most tragic events, and is therefore deserving of a Peabody Award.