The new ESPN+ original series Man in the Arena: Tom Brady — the star quarterback’s firsthand account of Super Bowl appearances over two decades — debuts Tues. Nov.16 with new episodes posting weekly.
Directed by Religion of Sports’ Gotham Chopra, the series features Brady and others from his life and career deconstructing milestones of his legendary NFL career, mining the psychological and emotional terrain of victory and defeat. Each episode focuses on a single Super Bowl appearance, beginning with Super Bowl XXXVI, the season Brady took over as quarterback for the New England Patriots after star Drew Bledsoe suffered an injury.
The docuseries is co-produced by ESPN, 199 Productions, Gotham Chopra for Religion of Sports, and NFL Films.
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Episodes depict not just pivotal moments but the series of small steps that seem insignificant at the time, but, when reflected upon, show the distance traveled. “Man in the Arena is more than a series of career highlights,” said Brady. It “shows what an incredible journey it has been for me these past 22 years and the incredible people that have impacted me on this amazing ride.”
Series features exclusive interviews with Julie Brady, Maureen Brady, Nancy Brady, Tedy Bruschi, Gisele Bündchen, Bledsoe, Julian Edelman, Alex Guerrero, Rob Gronkowski, Rodney Harrison, Peyton Manning, Willie McGinest, Lawyer Milloy, Randy Moss, Bill O’Brien, Richard Sherman, Michael Strahan, Mike Vrabel, Wes Welker, and Vince Wilfork.
“Tom Brady has been a dominant force in the NFL, and in the broader culture, for two decades now. No player in recent memory has been more analyzed or debated, more beloved or reviled,” said Chopra. “Man in the Arena is an examination of his impact on and off the field, and I’m eager for that discussion to continue around the series.”
Said Brian Lockhart, SVP, ESPN+ Original Content and ESPN Films: “Tom Brady went from being selected 199th overall in the 2000 NFL Draft to leading one of the greatest dynasties in sports, and he still isn’t done. That’s just the kind of story we love to tell: one that’s epic and sweeping on one hand, and human and complex on the other.”
Companion programming for the series includes Inside the Arena, a post-show to air live on ESPN+ following each episode, hosted by Tedy Bruschi and Field Yates; and After the Arena, hosted by Shae Cornette, Jason Fitz, and Skubie Mageza, which will stream to the ESPN App and ESPN’s Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube handles on the Wednesday evenings after each episode.
Chopra will also host a Man in the Arena podcast series, looking at Brady’s career and ways sports enrich and connect our world. That will also debut Nov. 16.
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