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PIONEERS OF TELEVISION: Doctors And Nurses

Airs Friday, July 18, 2014 at 10 p.m. on KPBS TV

Above: Raymond Massey and Richard Chamberlain shooting DR. KILDARE.

More than 200 breakthrough stars bring their stories to life in season four of this Emmy-nominated documentary series. Each episode melds compelling new interviews with irresistible clips to offer a fresh take on TV’s biggest celebrities.

Courtesy of PIONEERS OF TELEVISION archives

George Clooney in the years before ER.

Courtesy Library of Congress

Richard Chamberlain - early 1960s heartthrob Dr. Kildare.

Featured stars in this season’s four new episodes: “Standup to Sitcom” (July 11) “Doctors and Nurses” (July 18) “Breaking Barriers” (July 25) and “Acting Funny” (August 1), include Jerry Seinfeld, Robin Williams, Roseanne Barr, Bill Cosby, Tim Allen, Ray Romano, Noah Wyle, Anthony Edwards, Diahann Carroll, Howie Mandel, Bob Newhart and many more.

"Doctors And Nurses" - From George Clooney on ER to Richard Chamberlain on DR. KILDARE, television’s long love affair with doctors and nurses shows no signs of letting up. Noah Wyle, Anthony Edwards, Gloria Reuben and Eriq LaSalle open up about the secrets of ER; Howie Mandel, Ed Begley Jr. and Christina Pickles revisit ST. ELSEWHERE. The episode also features the final interview with Chad Everett of MEDICAL CENTER before his recent death.

“We are thrilled to bring another season of PIONEERS OF TELEVISION to PBS,” said executive producer Steve Boettcher, who, along with producing partner Mike Trinklein, has helmed numerous specials and series on television’s breakthrough performers. “From stars that had Americans howling with laughter in front of their television screens, to the ones who broke barriers — and maybe even some who saved lives — this season’s line-up features legends who paved the way for contemporary television.”

“The fourth season of PIONEERS OF TELEVISION continues the series’ winning formula of bringing television’s most well-known stars and their lesser-known stories to PBS,” says Donald Thoms, PBS Vice President of General Audience Programming. “The show does a masterful job of serving us the history of the medium while telling us the backstage tales of America’s favorite shows.”

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PIONEERS OF TELEVISION: Doctors and Nurses Preview

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George Clooney and his "Powerful Pen"

Above: George Clooney steps in and gets his African American co-star, Eriq La Salle, on the cover of TV Guide.

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ST. ELSEWHERE "Got it Right"

Above: ST.ELSEWHERE was the first show to portray medical procedures and the high pressure life of medical professionals accurately.

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Howie Mandel on ST. ELSEWHERE

Above: When standup comedian Howie Mandel auditioned for ST. ELSEWHERE, he thought he was trying out for his dream gig: a sitcom.

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Noah Wyle as Dr. John Carter

Above: Noah Wyle holds the record of playing a doctor longer then anyone else in a primetime series. Wyle discusses his growth as an actor and playing Dr. John Carter.

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PIONEERS OF TELEVISION: Season Four Preview

Above: More than 200 breakthrough stars bring their stories to life in season four of this Emmy-nominated documentary series. Each episode melds compelling new interviews with irresistible clips to offer a fresh take on TV’s biggest celebrities.