Diane Haithman contributes to Deadline’s TV coverage.
ESPN revealed plans for its 30 For 30 Shorts, an offshoot of its 30 For 30 documentary series, at today’s TCA panels. The short films, ranging from 3 to 12 minutes, will be produced in collaboration with Bill Simmons’ Grantland.com. The shorts will first be presented on the website beginning September 26 and later will be featured on all of ESPN’s digital platforms, said Connor Schell, vice president, ESPN Films.
And on the panel was the subject of the first installment, Arnold Schwarzenegger. The first short focuses on the former California governor’s teenage years with the Austrian Army.
Just before the panel featuring Schwarzenegger and Michael Zimbalist, co-director of the short, ESPN presented a panel on 30 For 30 Volume II, featuring directors of the next crop of 30 documentaries on sports figures that begins in October and continues through 2014. Included on the list was Billy Corben, director of Broke, a documentary about athletes who squander their fortunes. He joked that his appearance was just a “screensaver” until Schwarzenegger arrived. (The other “screensavers” were Coodi Simmons, co-director of Benji and Michael Bonfiglio, director of You Don’t Know Bo). (more…)