The History Channel Orders Three New Documentaries From Lebron James' Company

The three-part deal will prioritize largely unknown historical stories that put diverse changemakers at the forefront of each narrative.

By: Mar. 04, 2024
The History Channel Orders Three New Documentaries From Lebron James' Company
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The HISTORY Channel is expanding its partnership with LeBron James and Maverick Carter's The SpringHill Company (TSHC) and its award-winning studio team with the order of three new documentaries, it was announced by Eli Lehrer, Executive Vice President and Head of Programming for The HISTORY Channel. The three-part deal will prioritize largely unknown historical stories that put diverse changemakers at the forefront of each narrative.

The first project, “Triumph: Jesse Owens and the Berlin Olympics” (working title), a two-hour documentary narrated by award-winning actor Don Cheadle (“Carry On”) and directed by two-time Emmy nominated director Andre Gaines (“After Jackie”), will showcase Jesse Owens' historic triumph over Nazi Germany during the 1936 Berlin Olympics. This documentary will mark The SpringHill Company's second major collaboration with the network and Gaines following the Sports Emmy Award-nominated documentary “After Jackie,” which was produced in association with Major League Baseball and in collaboration with The Jackie Robinson Foundation.

Additionally, the partnership includes the development of the new documentary “Jim Thorpe” (working title) about the legendary Olympian whose athletic prowess across baseball, football and basketball made him one of the greatest athletes of all-time. Directed by Chris Eyre (Cheyenne and Arapaho), the project will showcase the life and legacy of the United States' first Native American Olympic gold medalist and explore what it means to be American through the pivotal intersection of identity and sport. The forthcoming third documentary will be announced at a later date.

The first two documentaries are produced for The HISTORY Channel by UNINTERRUPTED, the athlete empowerment brand within The SpringHill Company, and Cinemation Studios in association with GroupM Motion Entertainment on “Triumph: Jesse Owens and the Berlin Olympics” (w.t.) and INE Entertainment, Five All in the Fifth, and GroupM Motion Entertainment on “Jim Thorpe” (w.t.).

“The SpringHill Company was created to tell important stories and, through this partnership with The HISTORY Channel, we're able to do that on a whole new level,” said LeBron James. “With these documentaries, we want to share those meaningful moments and figures in history that matter with a whole new generation and continue to empower and inspire through storytelling.”

“LeBron and The SpringHill Company have been steadfast creative partners with The HISTORY Channel and we are excited to team up with them again to expand our storytelling footprint,” said Lehrer. “Together, we are committed to shining a light on diverse narratives that broaden our view of the world, enrich our knowledge of society, and cultivate a new generation of history lovers. Jesse Owens is the perfect sports legend to highlight next in our partnership.”

The setting is the 1936 Summer Olympics in Berlin, Germany, which is overpowered by the politically charged backdrop of swastikas, racial discrimination, and goose-stepping storm troopers. Three years before the start of WWII, African American TRACK AND FIELD athlete Jesse Owens took the world stage and launched into international fame by making Olympic history after winning four gold medals in the 100-meter dash, long jump, 200-meter dash and 4x100-meter dash. This feat made him arguably one of the greatest and most impactful athletes of all time.

“Triumph: Jesse Owens and the Berlin Olympics” (w.t.) will explore the dramatic tale of Owen's athletic dedication, perseverance, and triumph over Hitler's Aryan supremacy agenda. The documentary will also feature archival footage, smartly executed animation and first-hand interviews from family members, journalists, historians, and reputable athletes including former TRACK AND FIELD athlete Carl Lewis, American sprinters Noah Lyles, Erriyon Knighton, and Christian Coleman, and Owen's daughters Marlene and Beverly Owens, among others.

“Triumph: Jesse Owens and the Berlin Olympics” (w.t.) is produced for The HISTORY Channel by UNINTERRUPTED and Cinemation Studios in association with GroupM Motion Entertainment. LeBron James, Maverick Carter, Jamal Henderson, and Philip Byron serve as executive producers for UNINTERRUPTED. Andre Gaines is executive producer and director. Don Cheadle is executive producer. Richard Foster and Chet Fenster serve as executive producers for GroupM Motion Entertainment. Eli Lehrer and Jennifer Wagman serve as executive producers for The HISTORY Channel. Courtney Whitaker and Matt Rissmiller serve as co-executive producers for UNINTERRUPTED, and Ryan Lohuis serves as producer for Cinemation Studios.

“Jim Thorpe” (w.t.) is produced for The HISTORY Channel by UNINTERRUPTED in association with INE Entertainment, Five All in the Fifth, and GroupM Motion Entertainment. LeBron James, Maverick Carter, Jamal Henderson, and Philip Byron serve as executive producers for UNINTERRUPTED. Chris Eyre is executive producer and director. Mark Koops, Eric Day, and Doug Banker are executive producers for INE Entertainment and Five All in the Fifth, respectively. Richard Foster and Chet Fenster serve as executive producers for GroupM Motion Entertainment. Eli Lehrer and Jim Pasquarella serve as executive producers for The HISTORY Channel. Courtney Whitaker and Matt Rissmiller serve as co-executive producers for UNINTERRUPTED.

A+E Networks holds worldwide distribution rights to “Triumph: Jesse Owens and the Berlin Olympics” (w.t.) and “Jim Thorpe” (w.t.).

About The HISTORY Channel

The HISTORY Channel, a division of A+E Networks, is the premier destination for historical storytelling. From best-in-class documentary events to a signature slate of industry leading nonfiction series and premium fact-based scripted programming, The HISTORY Channel serves as the most trustworthy source of informational entertainment in media. The HISTORY Channel has been named the #1 U.S. TV network in buzz for seven consecutive years by YouGov BrandIndex, and a top favorite TV network by Beta Research Corporation.

About The SpringHill Company

The SpringHill Company's (TSHC) award-winning studio team, founded by LeBron James and Maverick Carter, develops and produces high-quality sports and entertainment television, film, and theatrical releases with the biggest creators, brands and platforms in the world. All studio projects are empowerment led, where content isn't simply to entertain, but to inspire with thought-provoking themes, conversations and journeys within documentaries and scripted verticals.

Studio projects within the unscripted and documentary space include The Shop, What's My Name: Muhammad Ali, Turning the Tables with Robin Roberts, Greatness Code, Dreamland: The Burning of Black Wall Street, Recipe for Change, The Wall, Top Class, Golden: THE JOURNEY of USA's Elite Gymnasts, The Redeem Team and many others.



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