NBC Sports has acquired “The Russian Five,” a documentary about the first five Russians to play together in the NHL.
The film tells the story of how Sergei Fedorov, Slava Fetisov, Vladimir Konstatinov, Slava Kozlov, and Igor Larionov defected from the Soviet Union and then helped transform the Detroit Red Wings from perennial losers to back-to-back Stanley Cup champions.
Toward the end of the Cold War in the late 1980s, Red Wings management hatched an audacious plan to draft the best Soviet players from behind the Iron Curtain and help them defect to Detroit.
Under the leadership of legendary coach Scotty Bowman, the Russian-led Red Wings would win the Stanley Cup in 1997 and 1998.
“The Russian Five” will premiere November 6 on NBCSN, following the Wednesday Night Hockey game between the Detroit Red Wings and New York Rangers.
1091 Media is teaming with outdoor retailer REI to release “Return to Mount Kennedy,” a documentary helmed by Eric Becker that combines elements of history, politics, mountaineering and even some grunge, with Pearl Jam’s Eddie Vedder providing original music.
A plan is underway for a fall theatrical release followed by an on-demand bow on November 5. REI will also host in-store screenings nationwide.
The film’s plot sets its base camp on March 20, 1965, when Bobby Kennedy became the first human to stand atop a peak in the Canadian Yukon that had just been named to honor his brother John F. Kennedy, assassinated two years earlier.
His guide was Jim Whittaker, who at 28 had became the first American to summit Mt. Everest and later became CEO of REI.
What should have been the ultimate Cinderella story — Michael Waltrip’s 2001 Daytona 500 victory snapping a 462-race losing streak — proved to be tragically bittersweet when his friend and team owner Dale Earnhardt Sr. fatally crashed seconds earlier.
The events leading up to that fateful February day have been affectingly chronicled in “Blink of an Eye,” a solidly assembled documentary portrait by filmmaker Paul Taublieb.
Taking Waltrip’s New York Times’ bestselling book, “In the Blink of an Eye: Dale, Daytona, and the Day that Changed Everything,” as inspiration, Taublieb weaves some terrific archival footage around his interview subjects, including Dale Earnhardt Jr., who had placed second on that tragic day, and track legend Richard Petty, who also played a mentoring role early in Waltrip’s career.
“Blink of an Eye” is playing now in select cities around the country.
The newly-formed World Surf League (WSL) Studios unveiled its debut slate of programming last week, which includes a documentary about 11-time world surf champion Kelly Slater and the series “Transformed,” highlighting how surfing has impacted cultures around the world.
Designed to appeal to surf fans and new audiences ahead of the sport’s Olympic debut at the 2020 Tokyo Summer Games, the slate of documentaries, docuseries, and daily short-form content will be distributed across multiple platforms.
If you haven’t seen “Maiden” yet, you’re missing out on one of the year’s best films.
Edge-of-your-seat exciting and blessed with numerous unexpected and dramatically satisfying story lines, the documentary is much more compelling than even its once-in-a-lifetime story line would indicate.
The focus is 1989’s first all-women crew to compete in the grueling Whitbread Round the World yacht race, at 32,000-plus miles the longest contest on Earth — and what a saga it turns out to be, filled with grit and daring in the face of conflict, fear, and life-threatening situations.
“Maiden” is playing in select theaters around the country.