CMT has slotted Saturday, August 6, 10 PM for the premiere of its original documentary The Bandit about Burt Reynolds and his best friend and stuntman Hal Needham and their making of iconic film Smokey and the Bandit.
The film, which premiered earlier this year at SXSW to critical praise, tells the story of the making of the film while tracing the personal journeys of Reynolds and Needham from obscurity to stardom. It features new interviews with Reynolds, rare archive material, including footage from Reynold’s personal archive, as well as candid interviews with the late Needham.
“It really turned out to be quite a love story,” said CMT head of development Jayson Dinsmore in an interview last week with Deadline. “We submitted it to South by Southwest. We world premiered there and demand was so great that they moved us from a 300-seat theater to a 3,000-seat theater and had to schedule three showings to meet the demand.”
Jesse Moss produces and directs. Amanda McBaine produces for Mile End Films. Jayson Dinsmore, Lewis Bogach and John Miller-Monzon executive produce for CMT.