ESPN Moves Up Michael Jordan Docuseries ‘The Last Dance’ to a Mid-April Premiere

10-part documentary about 1990s Chicago Bulls was set to debut in June

Last Updated: March 31, 2020 @ 7:13 AM

ESPN has moved up the premiere of its 10-part docuseries about Michael Jordan and the 1990s Chicago Bulls “The Last Dance” to now start on April 19. It will run over the next five weeks, concluding on May 17.

Outside of the U.S., “The Last Dance” will be made available on Netflix. The docuseries was originally meant to air on ESPN in June.

“As society navigates this time without live sports, viewers are still looking to the sports world to escape and enjoy a collective experience,” ESPN said in a statement. “We’ve heard the calls from fans asking us to move up the release date for this series, and we’re happy to announce that we’ve been able to accelerate the production schedule to do just that. This project celebrates one of the greatest players and dynasties ever, and we hope it can serve as a unifying entertainment experience to fill the role that sports often play in our lives, telling a story that will captivate everyone, not just sports fans.”

“Michael Jordan and the ’90s Bulls weren’t just sports superstars, they were a global phenomenon,” docuseries director Jason Hehir said in a statement. “Making ‘The Last Dance’ was an incredible opportunity to explore the extraordinary impact of one man and one team. For nearly three years, we searched far and wide to present the definitive story of an era-defining dynasty and to present these sports heroes as humans. I hope viewers enjoy watching our series as much as we enjoyed the opportunity to make it.”

“The Last Dance” follows the Chicago Bulls during their 1997-98 season, Jordan’s final season as a Bull and the team’s last championship run of their dynasty. A camera crew was given unprecedented access to the team during that season when all eyes were already on them, when Oprah was inviting Jordan to her show, and when just about every word spoken by the team was covered and scrutinized by the media.

ESPN first teased the existence of the documentary way back on Christmas of 2018, and the network released a new trailer for the film last year that shows the breadth of the documentary series and the enormous number of people sitting down to talk.

Though the docuseries features interviews with the players including Jordan, Scottie Pippen, Steve Kerr, Dennis Rodman, Phil Jackson and many, many more sports legends from the era, it also goes well beyond sports to understand how the Bulls affected pop culture. People as diverse as Barack Obama, Justin Timberlake and Carmen Electra all sit down for interviews alongside the athletes.

Jason Hehir, who directed the “30 for 30” on “The ’85 Bears” and most recently the excellent “Andre the Giant” HBO documentary, directs “The Last Dance” from producer Mike Tollin. The film is a joint production by ESPN and Netflix and is produced by Mandalay Sports Media, in association with NBA Entertainment and Jump.23.

Here is the new schedule:

ESPN

Sunday, April 19

9 p.m. ET – Premiere of “The Last Dance” Episode 1

10 p.m. ET – Premiere of “The Last Dance” Episode 2

Sunday, April 26

7 p.m. ET – Re-air of “The Last Dance” Episode 1

8 p.m. ET – Re-air of “The Last Dance” Episode 2

9 p.m. ET – Premiere of “The Last Dance” Episode 3

10 p.m. ET – Premiere of “The Last Dance” Episode 4

Sunday, May 3

7 p.m. ET – Re-air of “The Last Dance” Episode 3

8 p.m. ET – Re-air of “The Last Dance” Episode 4

9 p.m. ET – Premiere of “The Last Dance” Episode 5

10 p.m. ET – Premiere of “The Last Dance” Episode 6

Sunday, May 10

7 p.m. ET – Re-air of “The Last Dance” Episode 5

8 p.m. ET – Re-air of “The Last Dance” Episode 6

9 p.m. ET – Premiere of “The Last Dance” Episode 7

10 p.m. ET – Premiere of “The Last Dance” Episode 8

Sunday, May 17

7 p.m. ET – Re-air of “The Last Dance” Episode 7

8 p.m. ET – Re-air of “The Last Dance” Episode 8

9 p.m. ET – Premiere of “The Last Dance” Episode 9

10 p.m. ET – Premiere of “The Last Dance” Episode 10

NETFLIX (outside of the U.S.)

Monday, April 20 - 12:01 a.m. PT – “The Last Dance” Episodes 1 and 2

Monday, April 27 - 12:01 a.m. PT - “The Last Dance” Episodes 3 and 4

Monday, May 4 - 12:01 a.m. PT - “The Last Dance” Episodes 5 and 6

Monday, May 11 - 12:01 a.m. PT – “The Last Dance” Episodes 7 and 8

Monday, May 18 - 12:01 a.m. PT - “The Last Dance” Episodes 9 and 10

Immediately following each episode’s linear ESPN premiere, it will be available to authenticated subscribers on the ESPN App via mobile and connected TV devices, ESPN.com and ESPN on Demand via cable, satellite and DMVPD distributors.

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