ESPN Films and espnW have announced the slate for Nine for IX, the upcoming documentary series from the producers of the Emmy-nominated 30 for 30 series and executive producers Robin Roberts and Jane Rosenthal. Where 30 for 30 originated as an idea from Grantland's Bill Simmons as a way to commemorate ESPN's 30th anniversary, Nine for IX (inspired by the 40th anniversary of Title IX) will focus on "captivating stories of women in sports told through the lens of female filmmakers."
"ESPN Films is always looking to advance sports storytelling by working with the most dynamic voices and Nine for IX gives us a terrific opportunity to highlight women’s sports stories through the eyes of an incredible collection of directors," said Connor Schell, vice president of ESPN Films. "We are confident that fans of '30 for 30' will enjoy these creative, story-driven documentaries from an impressive roster of Oscar-nominated, and Emmy/Peabody-Award winning female filmmakers."
Films scheduled to air as part of the Nine for IX series include Venus VS. (Venus Williams and her impact on professional tennis), Pat XO (story of Tennessee head basketball coach Pat Summit), The Diplomat (Katarina Witt becomes one of East Germany's most famous athletes during the height of the Cold War), Runner (story of Olympic runner Mary Decker) and Branded (the marketing of Anna Kournikova).
"espnW is a voice for the woman who loves sports and, as we continue to grow, we are developing new and powerful ways to engage women with compelling stories that live across ESPN's multimedia platforms," said Laura Gentile, vice president of espnW. "Through Nine for IX and the expanded content on espnW.com, we are spotlighting the athletes, coaches and teams that have defined women's sports for a generation."
FOLLOW JAY BETSILL ON TWITTER @THEFAMOUSJAY