No, it’s not over yet. That’s what the History channel is saying concerning the subject of the Hatfields and McCoys.
The Hatfield and McCoy story has been a boom — and is already being called by some as an entertainment phenomena — for History. While the nation is experiencing feud-mania and eyes are on Logan and Mingo Counties and the Tug River Valley, History will air an additional new program about the famous vendetta: a two-hour documentary film, “America’s Greatest Feud: Hatfields and McCoys,” will debut Sat., June 2, at 4 p.m.
Both the documentary film and the miniseries were produced by Huntington native and Marshall graduate Darrell Fetty, a veteran Hollywood actor and writer, who also played Doc Rutherford in the miniseries.
The documentary is directed by Mark Cowen, the Emmy®-nominated director of Band of Brothers, and was shot extensively in West Virginia and Kentucky using local reenactors for the various action scenes, by Huntington-based film crew Trifecta Productions, owned by Joe Murphy. The documentary is narrated by Kevin Costner, who also portrayed Devil Anse Hatfield in the miniseries.
Those who were interviewed on-camera for the film included several local individuals, including Raamie Barker, Keith Davis, Jimmy Wolford and Bill Richardson, as well as other historians and Feud experts.
“The documentary features West Virginia scholar Bill Richardson, who actually lives just near the area, and who gives tours and lectures on the subject and takes you to the points of interest,” said Laura Decludt, a Thinkfactory Media coproducer for the documentary. “The nationwide excitement surrounding this story continues to be amazing.”
“Mr. Cowen and the Trifecta Production crew actually came to Chapmanville in early February to interview Raamie Barker and me at Peggy B. Hensley’s photography studio, pbh Art, Inc., at Pitt Branch,” said Keith Davis, a local author and publisher. “It was an honor and privilege to try to represent the research and writings of the late Dr. Coleman C. Hatfield, who was a dear friend and an accomplished Feud expert and Appalachian historian. He was the grandson of Cap Hatfield, and great-grandson of Devil Anse, and spent his entire adult life researching his family’s history — as his father, C.A. Hatfield, Cap’s son, also did.”
During the interview process, Barker, senior advisor to Governor Earl Ray Tomblin, discussed Kentucky and West Virginia expedition laws during the Feud era, as well as various other aspects of the story as relating to Logan County.
Many family photographs, including rare pictures belonging to the private Coleman C. Hatfield collection, used by permission of Arabel and Mark Hatfield (his children), were used in the making of the documentary. History sources for the film included several local books on the subject, including “The Devil’s Son: Cap Hatfield and the End of the Hatfield and McCoy Feud,” by Anne Black Gray; “The Tale of the Devil,” by Dr. Coleman C. Hatfield and Robert Y. Spence; “The Feuding Hatfields & McCoys,” also by Dr. Coleman C. Hatfield and F. Keith Davis; “Images of America: Logan County,” by F. Keith Davis; and others.
The Hatfields & McCoys miniseries, also starring Bill Paxton and Tom Berenger, ended its three-night run as the top three most-watched entertainment telecasts in ad-supported cable history. Wednesday night’s conclusion brought in 14.3 million viewers, topping the previous broadcasts and becoming the most-watched nonsports event ever on basic cable. History is expecting to maintain strong ratings this Saturday for the “America’s Greatest Feud: Hatfields and McCoys” documentary, which tells the rest of the story.
After the documentary on Saturday, which airs from 4-6 p.m., all three episodes of the Feud miniseries will then re-air in its entirety, from 6 p.m.-midnight.