by Joe Saltzman

Black on Black

Black on Black, a 90 minute documentary told without any written narratiion depicting how it feels to be Black person and live in South Central Los Angeles. It is acknowledged to be the first program of its kind on television. First broadcast in July, 1968, CBS in Los Angeles. Reprint: September, 1968. Awards: Winner of six major awards including the Edward R. Murrow Award for “distinguished television reporting and best documentary”; the Greater Los Angeles Press Club's Best Documentary; Radio Television News Directors' Association's Golden Mike, Western Region best documentary; Associated Press Certificate of Excellence; NAACP Image Award, and National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences Regional Emmy. One critic wrote: “The best documentary ever made on what it feels like to be black and live in the urban ghetto.” The documentary is considered one of the seminal television documentaries on African-Americans in the United States.

See the documentary, Black on Black on Youtube.

See Visions & Voices 40th anniversary screening at USC Annenberg

Joe Saltzman, producer of Black on Black, on how the documentary was made and why

Visions & Voices celebrate Black on Black's 40th anniversary (October, 2008)

1968 - Life in the Ghetto - 100 Great Stories - Columbia University

Televising Watts: Joe Saltzman's "Black on Black" (1968) by Joshua Glick.