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In The Footsteps of Marco Polo Previous Broadcasts

KQED 9: Fri, May 30, 2014 -- 9:00 PM

Some people dream big dreams. Only a few bold adventurers live them. Two such adventurers are Denis Belliveau and Francis O'Donnell, who took a wild idea - to retrace Marco Polo's entire 25,000 mile land-and-sea route from Venice to China and back - and spent 2 incredible years of their lives trying to turn it into reality. "We made a pact," says O'Donnell, "that, under any conditions, no matter what, we were only coming back to the US 1 of 2 ways - either dead or successful."
This program chronicles the extraordinary journey of two ordinary guys - Denis, at the time a wedding photographer, Francis an artist and US Marine veteran - as they venture on foot, on horseback, on camelback, in jeeps and trucks and boats and trains, through Venice, Turkey, Iran, Afghanistan, several former republics of the Soviet Union, China, Indonesia and India. Equal parts travelogue, adventure story, history trek and buddy movie, it chronicles their highs and lows as they retrace Polo's path, trying to see what he must have seen, feel what he must have felt.
In a feat of undaunted courage, in the spirit of history's great adventurers, Belliveau and O'Donnell make their way across the world's largest land mass and back, securing - or, when necessary, forging - visas, surviving extreme temperatures, and talking their way out of jams brought on by Tajik soldiers, Chinese security officers, and an assortment of other bureaucrats, border guards and armed warriors. Interweaving Belliveau and O'Donnell's own tales with the original 13th century descriptions of Marco Polo, brimming with adventure, history, art, and no small amount of humor, this program is a unique cinematic experience.

Repeat Broadcasts:

  • KQED 9: Sat, May 31, 2014 -- 3:00 AM
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TV Technical Issues

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    TV Technical Issues
    • KQED DT9s Over the Air: beginning Wed 7/09

      (DT9.1, 9.2, 9.3) The PSIP Info part of our Over the Air (OTA) signal for KQED DT9.1, 9.2, 9.3 dropped out of our overall signal early Wednesday 7/09. Once PSIP was restored most OTA receivers moved our signal back to the correct channel locations. However, for some viewers, it appears as if they have lost […]

    • KQED FM 88.1 translator off air Tues 6/03

      The Martinez translator for KQED-FM will be off the air all day Tuesday June 3rd. We are rebuilding the 25 year old site with all new antennas and cabling. This should only affect people listening on 88.1MHz in the Martinez/Benicia area.

    • KQET planned overnight outage: early Tues 5/13

      (DT25.1, 25.2, 25.3) KQET’s Over The Air (OTA) signal will shut down late May 12/early Tues 5/13 shortly after midnight to allow for extensive electrical maintenance work at the transmitter. Engineers will do their best to complete the work by 6am Tuesday morning. This will affect OTA viewers of the DT25 channels, and signal providers […]

To view previous issues and how they were resolved, go to our TV Technical Issues page.

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