Ken Burns Net Worth – 2022

Ken Burns

Net Worth $3.5 Million
Height Film director, Cinematographer, Television producer, Television Director, Screenwriter, Film Producer, Actor, Music Director, Author
Profession United States of America
Gender Male
Date of Birth Jul 29, 1953 (68 years old)

Ken Burns Net Worth:

$3.5 Million

What is Ken Burns’s Net Worth?

American director and producer Ken Burns has a $3.5 million net worth. Ken Burns is an American filmmaker who is known for making a lot of historical documentaries and documentary series. “The Vietnam War,” “Jazz,” “Prohibition,” and “The Roosevelts” are some of his most well-known works. Burns’ style of making movies is known for using old footage and slowly zooming in and out of photos. This is called the “Ken Burns effect.”

Burns also has more than 20 honorary degrees to his name. His movie “The Civil War” won more than 40 major film and TV awards, including two Emmy Awards, two Grammy Awards, the Producer of the Year Award from the Producers Guild of America, a People’s Choice Award, a Peabody Award, a duPont-Columbia Award, a D. W. Griffith Award, and the $50,000 Lincoln Prize. “The Vietnam War,” a documentary he made in 2017, was also praised.

The Jerome Liebling Center for Film, Photography, and Video at Hampshire College has a Ken Burns Wing. Burns won the Jefferson Awards’ S. Roger Horchow Award for Greatest Public Service by a Private Citizen in 2004. This award is given out every year.

Ken Burns was born on July 29, 1953, in the borough of Brooklyn in New York City. His parents, Lyla, a biotechnologist, and Robert, an expert in cultural anthropology, are his parents. Ric, who is younger and also a documentary filmmaker, is his younger brother. Because his family worked in academia, Burns and his family moved around a lot when he was young. Before he settled in Ann Arbor, Michigan, where his father taught at the University of Michigan, he lived in places like Newark, Delaware, and Saint-Véran, France. Burns’ mother died of breast cancer when he was 11 years old.

Burns got a film camera for his 17th birthday. He then used it to make a documentary about a factory in Ann Arbor. After he graduated from Pioneer High School, he went to Amherst, Massachusetts, to attend the private liberal arts school Hampshire College. Burns worked in a record store to pay for his college. In 1975, he got a degree in film studies and design from Hampshire College.

Career Beginnings

Burns started Florentine Films in 1976 with Roger Sherman, a college classmate, and Elaine Mayes, a photographer and professor. The next year, Buddy Squires, another college classmate, became a founding member. Soon after, Lawrence Hott also joined. Burns got more involved in the media business by becoming a cinematographer for the BBC and other TV channels.

How to Direct Movies and TV

Burns’s first job as a director was to turn David McCullough’s book “The Great Bridge” into a documentary. This was in 1977. The end result was the 1981 movie “Brooklyn Bridge,” which McCullough narrated. The movie was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature, which was one of its many awards. McCullough would go on to narrate many of Burns’s future films, including his next two, “The Shakers: Hands to Work, Hearts to God” (1984) and “The Statue of Liberty” (1985). Burns was nominated again for an Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature for the second film. The movies Huey Long, The Congress, and Thomas Hart Benton were the next ones he directed. Burns’s PBS miniseries “The Civil War,” which came out in 1990, is one of his most well-known and praised works. Over 40 major awards were given to the show, including two Emmys, two Grammys, a PGA Award, and a Peabody Award. In 1994, Burns won the Emmy for Outstanding Informational Series for his miniseries “Baseball.” This brought him more praise. Burns put out “Thomas Jefferson” and “Lewis & Clark: The Journey of the Corps of Discovery” three years later. “Frank Lloyd Wright” and “Not for Ourselves Alone: The Story of Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony” were the last two books he wrote in the 1990s.

Burns’ ten-part miniseries “Jazz,” which was nominated for an Emmy, was another big hit in 2001. He then wrote “Mark Twain,” “Horatio’s Drive: America’s First Road Trip,” and “Unforgivable Blackness: The Rise and Fall of Jack Johnson.” Then, in 2007, he put out “The War,” a seven-part miniseries about World War II from the point of view of four American towns. Burns went on to direct “The National Parks: America’s Best Idea,” a 2009 miniseries that won two Emmy Awards. This was followed by a number of other popular miniseries, such as “Prohibition,” “The Dust Bowl,” “The Roosevelts,” and “Jackie Robinson.” Burns also worked as a co-director on the 2012 documentary film “The Central Park Five.” In recent years, he has worked on movies like “The Vietnam War” in 2017, “Country Music” in 2019, “Hemingway” and “Muhammad Ali” in 2021, and “Benjamin Franklin” in 2022.

Executive Producing

Burns has also been an executive producer for a number of TV documentary miniseries that he did not direct. In 1996, he was one of the people in charge of making “The West,” which was directed by Stephen Ives, who he worked with often. Burns’s next credit as an executive producer was for the documentary film “Cancer: The Emperor of All Maladies,” which came out in 2015. He was also the executive producer of “College Behind Bars” by Lynn Novick and “The Gene: An Intimate History” by Chris Durrance and Jack Youngelson, among other things.


Besides being nominated for an Oscar and winning multiple Emmy and Grammy Awards, Burns has also won a lot of other awards. In 1991, he was given the National Humanities Medal and the Golden Plate Award. Later, in 2004, he was given the S. Roger Horchow Award for Greatest Public Service by a Private Citizen. Burns has also won the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, the International Humanities Medal from Washington University, the John Steinbeck Award, and an honorary doctorate from Brown University.

Personal Life

In 1982, Burns got married to Amy Stechler. Sarah and Lilly were the names of their two daughters. Sarah is a filmmaker, author, and public speaker who often works with her father. Lilly, on the other hand, is a TV producer and executive who helped start Jax Media with her husband. Burns and Stechler ended up divorcing in 1993. Burns married his second wife, Julie Brown, ten years after his first marriage. They have two daughters, Olivia and Willa.

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