Epix has slated a pair of original documentaries on barrier-smashing athletes and a stand-up special from the woman behind the MadTV character Bon Qui Qui.
New sole owner MGM said last month that it plans to increase spending on Epix originals, and these three projects are the first to be announced. The two docu specials will focus on Danica Patrick, the race car driver who shook up a male-dominated sport, and George Foreman, the 1970s heavyweight champ who reclaimed the world title as a 45-year-old in 1994.
Directed by Hannah Storm and produced by Epix in conjunction with Brainstormin Productions, Danica will premiere in the fall. Foreman, directed by Chris Perkel and executive produced by Gary Cohen, is set to bow September 13.
Anjelah Johnson: Mahalo and Goodnight, the Bon Qui Qui comic’s fourth stand-up special, takes on such topics as awkward massages, home invasions, spiders and being a full-grown child. Premiering on September 29, the show is directed by Ryan Polito and exec produced by Johnson, Dave Rath, Brian Volk-Weiss, Cisco Henson and Ross Bernard and produced by Valerie Bishop Pearson.
“Epix is proud to continue its long-standing tradition of delivering thought provoking, insightful documentaries and specials to our audience,” President and CEO Mark Greenberg said. “As Epix continues to expand its slate of originals, these new additions underscore our commitment to delivering the kind of relevant, incisive programming for which we’re known.”
Here are descriptions of the specials, provided by premium cable net:
Danica Patrick has commanded attention with her achievements in professional motorsports, making herself a household name by going against the current and succeeding in a male-dominated world. Now, at 35, this transcendent sports star stands on the cusp of something even bigger than she ever might have imagined growing up as a girl racing go-carts for her dad.
In Danica, the racing superstar reveals herself like never before: as a competitor eagerly preparing for her next race; a woman confidently considering when she wants to start a family; and a budding mogul carefully considering thinking about her next steps. Directed by award-winning journalist and pioneer in sports broadcasting Hannah Storm (Brainstormin Productions), this documentary will take a rare, candid look at an icon, capturing never-before-seen moments on and off the track with Danica Patrick and those closest to her.
In 1994, at the age of 45, George Foreman completed the greatest comeback in the history of heavyweight boxing. Not only did he reclaim the heavyweight championship crown that was lost in spectacular fashion 20 years earlier to Muhammad Ali, but he went on to complete an unparalleled personal transformation – from reviled street bully to beloved teddy bear. Foreman is the unlikely story of a boxer who struggles with, and later establishes, a sense of purpose on his remarkable journey to achieve the impossible.
ANJELAH JOHNSON: MAHALO & GOODNIGHT
Filmed at the Hawaii Theater in Honolulu, Hawaii, Anjelah Johnson’s fourth stand-up comedy special dishes on awkward massages, home invasions, spiders and being a full-grown child.
Born and raised in San Jose, California and of Mexican and Native American descent, Anjelah Johnson is a sought-after actress and comedian who is best known for her role on the beloved series MADtv, leaving a memorable legacy with the breakout original character – and Internet sensation – Bon Qui Qui. This original character, a disgruntled fast food employee with no filter, has been enjoyed by over 65 million people worldwide. Johnson has also appeared in multiple commercials and on film, and guest-starred on shows such as The Shield, Ugly Betty, Curb Your Enthusiasm and others all while touring with her sold-out stand-up comedy shows.