On July 28th ESPN Films and espnW will launch a new documentary series, Nine for IX Shorts. The short films are an extension of the Nine for IX series that aired on ESPN last summer. The films bring attention to variety of topics in women’s sports and are beautifully produced by female filmmakers.
A new film will premiere on espnW.com every day and a clip will be featured on SportsCenter.
The five films in the series include:
Rowdy Ronda Rousey:
Directed by the Mundo Sisters
On February 23, 2013, Ronda “Rowdy” Rousey made history by becoming UFC’s first female Bantam Weight Champion. After beating her opponent Liz Carmouche with her signature armbar, Rousey also became the #1 female MMA fighter in the world. The film will take an inside look at this record breaking fight and how Rousey is paving the way for women in the sport. We’ll learn about Rousey’s rough childhood and how it shaped her fighting career. The film will also explore the extreme physical challenges and emotional strength behind becoming the world’s greatest female fighter.
Premiers July 28th.
Directed by Nikki Reed
Jason McElwain’s 20 points in four minutes inspired sports fans around the world and fine-tuned the conversation surrounding people diagnosed with autism. But it was the perseverance and undeterred support of Jason’s mother, Debbie, who coached her son and provided him with the strength and confidence to step onto his high school basketball court and hit six 3-pointers, and one 2-pointer in four minutes of play. Featuring heartfelt interviews from Jason, his mother Debbie and his brother Josh, “Think Normal” is a look at what a mother sacrificed for her sons.
Premiers July 29th.
Brittney Griner: Lifesize:
Directed by Melissa Johnson
This is a rite of passage story following Brittney’s inaugural season with the Zhejiang Golden Bulls. Director Melissa Johnson will collaborate with espnW’s Kate Fagan to chronicle not only Brittney’s transformation from amateur to professional but also from a celebrated kid with unlimited potential to a self-reliant adult with a deep inner capacity to make her championship dreams a reality. Blazing with authenticity, humor and irreverence, this story about the courage it takes to become everything that’s you — in the biggest, boldest way imaginable — is certain to delight and inspire.
Premiers July 30th.
Directed by Tina Carbone
In 1995, Bill Koch put together the first ever all-women America’s Cup team. Made up of top female athletes from across the country, the team made history onboard America3 and inspired fans across the country. But the team morale faltered after a series of changes were made including a new boat they weren’t use to, the replacement of a female team member with a male, and a last-minute rule change that allowed three teams to make it to the finals instead of two. In the last race of the Defender Series, the Mighty Mary lost their lead and rival Stars & Stripes beat them to the finish line.
Premiers July 31st.
Play a Round With Me:
Directed by Jessica Wolfson
In the 1980’s, Jan Stephenson became professional golf¹s first tabloid star, shaking up the game with her sex appeal and charismatic self-promotion. Amid intense media attention, Stephenson’s colorful and controversial life off the course often overshadowed her fierce determination to win championships. This film follows a tense year where, against all odds, Jan Stephenson tried to prove she was more just a pretty face.
Premiers August 1st.
All Nine for IX Shorts will air back-to-back in a two-hour block on Saturday, August 2, at 2:30 p.m. ET on ESPN.
About ESPN Films
Created in March 2008, ESPN Films produces high-quality films showcasing some of the most compelling stories in sports. In October 2009, ESPN Films launched the Peabody Award-winning, Producer’s Guild Award-winning and Emmy-nominated 30 for 30 film series. Inspired by ESPN’s 30th Anniversary, the films that made up the series were a thoughtful and innovative reflection on the past three decades told through the lens of diverse and interesting sports fans and social commentators. The strong reaction from both critics and fans led to the launch of 30 for 30 Volume II, which is currently underway. Additional projects from ESPN Films include the critically-acclaimed Nine for IX series, SEC Storied and the webby award-winning 30 for 30 Shorts.
espnW’s mission is to serve women as fans and athletes. espnW.com provides an engaging environment that offers total access to female athletes and the sports they play, takes fans inside the biggest events, and shares a unique point of view on the sports stories that matter most to women.
Founded in July, 2010, espnW lives across television, films, events, digital and social platforms. The annual espnW: Women + Sports Summit is the leading event of its kind in the sports industry. The Women’s Sports Foundation is a charity of choice for espnW.
Info via ESPN press release