Nelson Mandela - Discovery Channel

As a tribute to the late Nelson Mandela, Discovery Channel will air the world premiere of The Making of Mandela this evening.The new original documentary celebrates the remarkable life of the legendary South African leader. The hour-long documentary provides a true representation of Mandela’s personal story, and crucially the key decisions that he made throughout his incredible journey to freedom. Told through intimate and revealing interviews with those who knew Mandela best.

The Making of Mandela is the story of how Nelson Mandela became a symbol of hope and peace not only to South Africa—but to the world. With his closest friends offering unique and intimate insight into Mandela’s world, the film presents a thoughtful look at the hard choices he was faced with—his bravery, integrity and a passion for freedom for all that marked his 95 years.

Narrated by British star David Harewood, the interviews are supplemented by Mandela’s own recordings for his book, A Long Walk to Freedom, beginning with the Sharpeville massacre in 1960.

From the origins of this young black lawyer’s fight for equal rights for all South Africans and the birth of uMkhonto weSizwe (Spear of the Nation); to Mandela’s unjust jailing for 27 years, and some of the indignities he was forced to endure, and ultimately the unprecedented international campaign to free Mandela and his eventual release, the show chronicles with in detail his poignant journey to freedom—for himself and for all South Africans.

The documentary speaks to many of his friends and associates including Brian Widlake the British TV presenter who for the first time reveals the true nerve-wracking story of how he evaded South Africa’s feared Secret Service to secure Mandela’s first ever global interview and how it sent shock waves throughout the world.

Last night as the news broke that Nelson Mandela, the first black president of South Africa, had died aged 95 a peak audience of 6.08 million turned to BBC News at 10pm while ITV News saw 4.29 million viewers tune in.

The Discovery Channel special airs from 8pm.

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