With just two episodes left in FX’s dramatized version of The People vs OJ Simpson, ESPN revealed some more details about their own OJ Simpson feature. The 30 for 30, entitled OJ: Made in America, will be ESPN’s first-ever multi-part documentary.
It’s also going to be debuting on ABC in primetime at 9 PM on Saturday, June 11th. That’s another first for a 30 for 30. The remaining four episodes will all premiere on ESPN over the following week.
Here’s the full schedule for the premiere dates.
Part 1: Saturday, June 11th, ABC, 9 PM
Part 2: Tuesday, June 14th, ESPN, 9 PM
Part 3: Wednesday, June 15th, ESPN, 9 PM
Part 4: Friday, June 17th, ESPN, 9 PM
Part 5: Saturday, June 18th, ESPN, 9 PM
In addition, the previous part of the film will air at 7 PM before the newest parts air, allowing for viewers to easily catch up in case they missed a segment.
And the synopsis of the documentary from ESPN…
It is perhaps the defining cultural tale of 20th-century America, one that centers around two of our country’s greatest fixations: race and celebrity. Directed by Peabody and Emmy winner Ezra Edelman, “O.J.: Made in America” will explore these themes in tracing a personal journey, from how Orenthal James Simpson first became a football star, to why the country fell in love with him off the field, to his being accused of murdering his ex-wife, his subsequent acquittal and why he is sitting in jail 20 years later for another crime.
“We are incredibly proud of this epic work of documentary filmmaking. It’s one of the most unique projects ESPN Films has ever done,” said Marie Donoghue, EVP, Global Strategy and Original Content. “We are especially excited to team with our ABC colleagues to premiere the first installment on ABC.”
It’s also worth noting that none of the five parts will conflict with the NBA Finals on ABC. That’s some strong scheduling by ESPN. The fourth part also airs on the 22nd anniversary of the Bronco chase. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that ESPN chose this week to air the documentary.
After ten hours of the over the top The People vs OJ on FX, I wonder what the feedback for the ten hours of this 30 for 30 will look like. It’s quite an ambitious project, and if ESPN is premiering it on ABC, they must think pretty highly of the final product.