Good news for fans of the greatest basketball player of all-time: a 10-hour Michael Jordan documentary is in the works. According to the New York Post's Richard Johnson, the NBA and Creative Artists Agency (CAA) are shopping an authorized doc that will cover the murder of Jordan's father and his first retirement in 1993, his stint playing minor-league baseball and his return to the Chicago Bulls for their second three-peat.
The producing team is led by Mike Tollin, who spearheaded ESPN's acclaimed "30 for 30" series and is partners with Peter Guber in Mandalay Sports Media. The project has been pitched to ESPN, Showtime, HBO and Fox Sports, and Jordan's reps are looking for a deal somewhere north of $20 million.
The success of ESPN's eight-hour O.J. Simpson documentary earlier this year is said to have convinced Jordan that the time is right for his life story.
The Post also noted that the film is expected to "gloss over his love of gambling," which isn't terribly surprising considering it will be an authorized documentary. It does suggest, however, that this could wind up being a pretty sanitized version of Jordan's life.
There is no shortage of books on Jordan and his career, but nothing as comprehensive as this has ever been attempted on film. It is an opportunity to go much deeper than his NBA home videos and his IMAX film. Every basketball fan should hope that it happens and it is done right.