2008 Television (1981-2009)


The judges praised the two-hour program, a production of NOVA and Vulcan Productions, Inc., for its careful, balanced presentation on the landmark Dover, Pennsylvania, court case that weighed the merits of discussing “intelligent design” in the science classroom. Through interviews with participants in the 2005 case, use of trial transcripts and reenactments of key courtroom moments, the broadcast captured the community turmoil surrounding the case, described the modern science of evolution, and explained why U.S District Court Judge John E. Jones III ruled that intelligent design is a religious idea that should not be taught in public school science classrooms. Frank Roylance, a science writer for The Baltimore Sun who was on the judging panel, said the program was “a very careful, methodical and sensitive presentation of a vital scientific question, with enormous social and political import.” He added: “The filmmakers managed to be both clear and accurate with the science, and fair and sensitive to the beliefs of the ID proponents.” Tina Hesman Saey of Science News said the program “brought to life the scientific process and really shows how we know what we know about the evolution of life on Earth.”