Patriotic TV Specials for the Fourth of July – 2014


It’s Independence Day once more, and with the national holiday comes the airing of TV specials, programming and movies that celebrate the grand history of the United States.

While a few networks are airing television specials geared towards evening festivities, TCM is dedicating its entire schedule for the day to classic films that primarily have to do with the American Revolution, but other military excursions are featured too.

All times are EST.


Macy's 4th of July Fireworks Spectacular
8 p.m. - Macy's 4th of July Fireworks Spectacular

The 35th annual Macy’s celebration is taking place at the Brooklyn Bridge in New York City, and musicians Enrique Iglesias, Ariana Grande and Lionel Richie will be providing featured performances.

This year is also the 200th anniversary of the authorship of “The Star Spangled Banner,” which was written by Francis Scott Key during the War of 1812. The country’s national anthem will be honored with additional musical contributions from The DIVA Jazz Orchestra, Idina Menzel, Essential Voices USA and others.


A Capitol Fourth 8 p.m - A Capitol Fourth

In Washington, D.C., host Tom Bergeron will present a fireworks display on the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol Building as a concert ensues.

The National Symphony Orchestra, Frankie Valli, Patti Labelle, Jordin Sparks and Phillip Phillips have been tapped to provide the tunes.


6 a.m. - Give Me Liberty

6:30 a.m. - John Paul Jones
The Scarlet Coat

8:45 a.m. - Sons of Liberty

This 1939 Academy Award-winning short film is based on the true story of Haym Solomon, a Polish immigrant who allied with a group of colonial protesters and helped with the financing of the Revolutionary War. Claude Rains, who was nominated for four Best Supporting Actor Academy Awards over the course of his career, portrays the protagonist.

9:15 a.m. - The Howards of Virginia

11:15 a.m. - The Scarlet Coat

John Sturges, oft-nominated for the Directors Guild of America Best Director Award, helmed this 1955 movie about British and American spies, and Benedict Arnold’s betrayal. Cornel Wilde, Michael Wilding and Robert Douglas appear as characters inspired by real historical figures, while Anne Francis portrays a fictional love interest for the warring men.

1 p.m. - Declaration of Independence

1:30 p.m. - 1776


Based on the eponymous Broadway production, this 1972 Golden Globe-nominated musical features founding fathers like John Adams, Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Jefferson taking action in the Second Continental Congress and expressing themselves through song. William Daniels, Howard Da Silva and Ken Howard are amongst the principal cast.

6:30 p.m. - The Devil's Disciple

8 p.m. - Sergeant York

Set during World War I, the life of Sergeant Alvin York is chronicled in this 1941 film about a U.S. Army serviceman who received the Medal of Honor for his life-saving heroics during a battle against the Germans. Gary Cooper won the Academy Award for Best Actor for his portrayal of York, while the flick also received recognition for Best Filming Editing, as well as many other nominations.

10:30 p.m. - The Fighting 69th

Author: Brian Cameron

Image credit: Shutterstock


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