Inside the Ku Klux Klan
Tuesday March 29th at 9.30pm
This special will be on TVNZ OnDemand
2015 marks the 150th anniversary of America's most notorious white supremacist group, the Ku Klux Klan. This one-off observational documentary gains unprecedented access to a modern day Missouri-based chapter of the Klan, the Traditionalist American Knights.
Filmed across several states over a period of seven months, in the wake of the civil unrest in Ferguson, Missouri, BAFTA-award winning filmmaker Dan Vernon journeys into the heart of the group. In a bid to challenge and explore the views of the normally reticent KKK, he meets prominent members, who claim not to support violence, but also travels to Texas to hear first-hand about a notorious crime committed by members of a different Klan chapter. The Traditionalist American Knights are mounting a recruitment drive. But are they really increasing in numbers as fast as they claim?
The enlistment push creates even further tension with local black gangs, but also receives opposition from Anonymous - the international cyber group. When Anonymous hack into the Traditionalist American Knights' website and publish Klan members' personal information, making national news, it causes some KKK members to flee.
Others, including 'The Imperial Wizard' or leader of the group Frank Ancona, are keen to rebrand themselves and disassociate from the violent legacy of the Klan. However, when news breaks that three members of the Traditionalist American Knights in Florida have been arrested for planning to kill a black man, the film asks if, despite the new face, the KKK still has a dark heart. This film offers a unique insight into an extreme and controversial organization that many believe disbanded generations ago.