Having been highly critically-acclaimed since launching in 2009 to a level that it has enabled it to carry on beyond the anniversary year in the same branding, the ESPN Film series 30 for 30 have announced 7 more sports documentaries to arrive by the end of the year.
For fans of the series, in which professional film-makers create full-length documentaries on a sports topic close to them, there will be a chance to enjoy no less than 6 on consecutive Tuesday nights starting in October.
Beginning on 7 October (but led in a week beforehand on 30 September with It’s Time, of ESPN Films’ spin-off series SEC Storied), the batch will begin with Playing for the Mob (focusing on a game fixing scandal involving the 1970’s Boston college basketball team, followed by a new 30 for 30 short The Great Trade Robbery on american football player Herschel Walker and the Dallas Cowboys).
This will be followed in successive weeks by The Day The Series Stopped (where an earthquake delayed the 1989 World Series in San Francisco), When the Garden was Eden (the 1970’s New York Knicks), Brian and the Boz (the story of american football player Brian Bosworth), Brothers in Exile (Cuban baseball players Livan and Orlando Hernandez moving to the major league in the 1990’s), and Rand University (former NFL star Randy Moss retracing his roots).
Finally, there will be a month delay before the 7th and final part of the batch, (and 26th of the 30-part second season) with the series’ first-ever sequel episode, The U Part 2, focusing on the Miami Hurricanes college american football team rebuilding after 1990s sanctions, only to face fresh controversies amongst their success, set to air just over 5 years after the original, on 13 December following coverage of the Heisman Trophy presentation. Airtimes for all upcoming documentaries will vary from 8-10pm ET across the run. The full descriptions of the films being made can be seen here.
ESPN‘s ‘vice president & executive producer’ of ESPN Films and Original Programming, Connor Schell, said of the new films: “Even though we have been at this for five years now, there is no shortage of incredible moments from the world of sports, so that enables us to continue making 30 for 30 films we’re proud of. The new slate takes a look at events and people that may be familiar to viewers, but our intent is to provide a totally different perspective through the visions of our various filmmakers.”
While the many spin-off series in the ESPN Films family makes it difficult to pin an exact figure on the number of documentaries that have been made since ESPN’s 30th anniversary in 2009 (although it is certainly over the original 30 planned, with 56 by the end of the year for the full-length 30 for 30 banner, and over 100 for all documentaries), but it is a series that can keep going a long time considering the vast number of stories around in American and global sport, even minor moments could be stretched out… maybe…
ESPN could even just take on the challenge of fictional stories if they want to, it’s all fine as long as they keep up the quality: