One brief tidbit from ESPN’s upfront presentation to advertisers this week that we haven’t mentioned yet are new plans for 30 for 30. Bristol announced plans for an entire new 30 for 30 season with 30 (!!!) new documentaries on the table for the illustrious series.
It’s an important announcement for ESPN in two regards. 1) 30 for 30 is on the short list of the very best things the network has done and more high quality documentaries on interesting topics is always a good thing. 2) It’s a sign that in a post-Simmons world, 30 for 30 and ESPN Films are still moving ahead and churning out more top notch documentaries.
While ESPN didn’t reveal the entire list of films, here’s the ones we do know will be a part of the new season:
– The early 90s Buffalo Bills who went to four straight Super Bowls and lost them all.
– Pete Carroll
– John Daly
The one on the early 90s Bills could have the potential to be one of the best 30 for 30s in history given the incomparable accomplishments and heartbreak of that team. The John Daly film could be golf’s answer to the Brian Bosworth film – given the highs and lows throughout his career that should be fascinating. Similarly, ESPN could spend an entire 30 for 30 on Fan Man, let alone the entirety of the Tyson-Holyfield rivalry. The only one I’m a bit skeptical on is Pete Carroll, unless there’s a serious window into his 9/11 truther stuff. Notably missing from the announcement was any mention on the five hour OJ Simpson 30 for 30 we reported on earlier this month.
The exciting thing is that these four films just scratches the surface of the new 30 for 30 season. And in truth, the existence of a new season shows the real strength of the concept – there is a nearly unlimited supply of compelling stories within the world of sports to showcase on a much deeper and more meaningful level. ESPN should be able to lean on 30 for 30 and ESPN Films as a cornerstone of the network for quite some time.
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