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  • Writer's pictureSarah E. Mason

25 Years with Dateline NBC: Interview with Correspondent Josh Mankiewicz

Josh Mankiewicz, photo credit Dateline NBC.

Groundhog Day 2020 marked 25 years that Josh Mankiewicz has been reporting for "Dateline NBC", "And it went by like that," remarked Mankiewicz.

The Emmy-winning, unscripted, investigative series has been integral to the network’s programming since its 1992 debut. Mankiewicz joined in 1995. In its 28th season, the show covers stories ranging from mysteries to documentaries and in-depth investigations. Cases involving murders and missing people are frequent topics and have elevated Mankiewicz and his colleagues, correspondents, Keith Morrison, Andrea Canning, Dennis Murphy and Lester Holt, to super stardom.

"We could find bloodier crimes. We could find more famous crimes," explained Mankiewicz. "We're not as interested in that. Dateline is about the choices people make when relationships don't work out."

Dateline NBC correspondents from left to right, Keith Morrison, Andrea Canning, Lester Holt, Josh Mankiewicz and Dennis Murphy. Photo credit Dateline NBC.

Throughout his distinguished career, Mankiewicz has covered a wide range of stories including Hurricane Katrina, the 1996 and 2000 presidential campaigns and the terrorist takeover of Japan's embassy in Lima, Peru and numerous aspects of airline and airport safety and security. Mankiewicz reported on state and local politics for KCAL-TV, Los Angeles, WCBS-TV New York and WJLA-TV, Washington. He served as a correspondent for Fox Broadcasting Company and ABC News where he got his start in TV news. "Carl Bernstein, who had been hired to be the Washington Bureau Chief of ABC News, got it in his head that I should be trained to be a TV reporter," recounted Mankiewicz.

Mankiewicz is a member of the prestigious Mankiewicz Family his grandfather was Herman Mankiewicz, Oscar-winning screenwriter of Citizen Kane, his great uncle, Joseph, was a four time Oscar winner whose credits include, All About Eve, Cleopatra, his father, Frank Mankiewicz was Bobby Kennedy's press secretary and President of NPR, his brother Ben Mankiewicz is host of Turner Classic Movies.

Mankiewicz recounts childhood memories living in Beverly HIlls when his father was an entertainment attorney in Beverly Hills in the late 50s. "Jay Silverheels who played Tonto on The Lone Ranger came over to my house once," said Mankiewicz, "He came straight from the set so he was still wearing that jacket with the fringe on it. I was transfixed thinking, Tonto who's usually on the TV set is now next to the TV set."

Listen to the complete interview by Sarah Mason with Josh Mankiewicz below or download on Apple Podcasts and Soundcloud.

Sarah Mason is host and producer for The HMC Network.


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