Press Release: Sports and History Collide in New HBO Canada Original Series SPORTS ON FIRE, Premiering January 9


HBO Canada (logo via Wikimedia)

TORONTO (December 17, 2014) – Untold perspectives from moments when history and sports collide are revealed in SPORTS ON FIRE, a six-part, half-hour original documentary series from Movie Central and The Movie Network debuting FridayJan. 9 at 9 p.m. ET/MT on HBO Canada. Each episode of SPORTS ON FIRE brings a fresh angle and new insight into iconic moments in sport, through interviews and archival footage presented in a rapid-paced, hard-hitting style.

“In our new series SPORTS ON FIRE, director Pete McCormack uses his sophisticated lens to get a different perspective on pivotal and controversial moments in history that we all thought we knew, through exclusive interviews with athletes and coaches,” said Maria Hale, Vice President, Head of Content Distribution & Pay TV, Corus Entertainment. “The series is sure to resonate with our audience as it opens up a window into events that have shaped sports culture and beyond, told in a way that can only be done on HBO Canada”.

“What makes this series unique is its ability to uncover rare insight from experts, family members, and most importantly from the athletes who lived these monumental experiences,” said Tracey Pearce, Senior Vice-President, Specialty and Pay, Bell Media. “Whether viewers are sports lovers, history buffs, or a fans of documentary film, SPORTS ON FIRE is compelling, must-watch television”.

Directed and created by Pete McCormack (Facing Ali, I Am Bruce Lee), SPORTS ON FIRE digs deep into moments where some of the world’s greatest athletes are caught up in monumental events that change the course of history. These powerful stories are told from the point of view of elite athletes, key witnesses, experts, and historians including, nine-time gold-medalist and Olympic legend Mark Spitz, Daytona 500 winner Ryan Newman, gold-medalist and Lance Armstrong teammate Tyler Hamilton, and four-time Super Bowl champion Bill Romanowski.

In the series premiere, SPORTS ON FIRE gives viewers a behind-the-scenes look into the 1972 Summit Series, played at the height of the Cold War, as remembered by journalists, Russian historians, and three unforgettable hockey legends. Canadian greats Paul Henderson, Bobby Clarke, and Ken Dryden reflect on the Series, questioning the boundaries and the potential glory of the win-at-any-cost mentality that ultimately led to a stunning victory in Moscow.

In subsequent episodes, premiering Friday nights at 9 p.m. ET/MT on HBO Canada, the series delves into topics such as: the myths surrounding African American athlete Jesse Owens, winner of four gold medals at the 1936 Summer Olympics in Hitler’s Germany; the story of Ankie Spitzer, who recalls the terror, secrets, and incompetence that came to light after her husband, André Spitzer, along with 10 other Israeli athletes, was slain at the 1972 Munich Olympics; the confusion, hypocrisy, and challenges surrounding nearly a century of gender testing of female athletes; Prohibition and bootlegging’s roots in NASCAR; and the inside world of performance enhancing drugs.

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(Featured Image via Bell Media)