ESPN has scheduled its next “30 for 30” documentary, and soccer fans will probably want to mark their calendars.
The network announced Thursday that “George Best: All by Himself,” the story of the troubled by uber-talented Manchester United star, will air Tuesday July 20 at 8 p.m. ET. It will be directed by Daniel Gordon, who also directed the 2014 documentary “Hillsborough.”
“I wanted to make a film that dug beneath the surface of the caricature of ‘Britain’s First Pop Star Soccer Player’ and tell a tale of emotional depth that takes us on George’s rollercoaster journey of a life,” said director Daniel Gordon in a news release. “This is a cautionary tale. It is a story of addiction and what can happen to someone who has so much at such a young age, who reaches unimaginable heights—and then hits the ‘self-destruct’ button throughout the rest of his descent to rock bottom.”
ESPN has found success with soccer documentaries during the “30 for 30” era, from “The Two Escobars” in 2010 to “Hillsborough” in 2014, the latter of which was part of the network’s “soccer stories” series.
George Best doesn’t have too high a profile in the United States, but he fits a classic sports archetype of the star athlete who enjoys fame a little too much. He starred at Manchester United in the 1960s and became a crossover celebrity throughout the UK before leaving the team amid controversy in 1974. Alcohol was his greatest vice, as he spent time in prison after being arrested for drunk driving and assaulting a police officer and later required a liver transplant. He died in 2005 after his body rejected a new liver, causing a kidney infection.
Here’s the trailer for “George Best: All by Himself.” It looks like a good one.
It’s official – our upcoming film, #GeorgeBest: All By Himself, will air July 20th!
— ESPN Films 30 for 30 (@30for30) July 6, 2017