Sports Illustrated is taking another stab at bringing its brand to TV. SI is presenting Sport in America: Our Defining Stories, a five-part documentary series that’s scheduled to air on Time Warner corporate sibling HBO in 2013.
SI has tried a number of times to establish a TV presence over the years to compete with ESPN, but its collaborations with HBO to date have been limited to one-offs around its Swimsuit and Sportsman of the Year franchises. Last year, Time Warner unit Turner took over SI's digital ad sales to challenge ESPN.
A SI rep said the series was not a response by HBO to ESPN, whose two-year-old 30 for 30 documentary series has enjoyed critical acclaim.
Sport in America will examine national character through the lens of sports. It’ll be complemented by features in the magazine and social media features on SI's and HBO’s websites. A promotional campaign starting today will invite fans to submit their favorite sports memories to be considered for inclusion in the series.
SI Sports Group editor Terry McDonell worked with Endgame Entertainment in association with Playground to produce the series.