ESPN is hoping its latest original, “Enhanced,” will be enough to convert dedicated sports fans to subscribers of its OTT platform ESPN+.
The new series, which will premiere exclusively on the $5 per month service on July 16, takes an in-depth dive into the modern world of sports training and technology. The series will explore the power struggles and breakthrough innovations that are driving the greatest athletic performances of our time.
Executive produced by Alex Gibney (“Catching Hell,” “30 for 30”) along with Stacey Offman, Brad Herbert, Issac Bolden and Rich Perello, the docu-series will feature interviews with a range of experts and athletes, including Dan Coyle, author of “The Talent Code”; Portland Trail Blazers basketball player CJ McCollum; David Epstein, investigative reporter at ProPublica; and New York Yankees pitcher Dellin Betances.
“We’ve been talking to Alex for years about making something like “Enhanced” – an edgy, forward-looking collection about the limits of the human body – and are so grateful to have worked with him and the talented roster of directors on this docuseries,” said Libby Geist, VP and executive producer at ESPN Films and Original Content. “It’s a fresh new format for ESPN Films, and we are continuing to push our own storytelling boundaries as our projects take on different forms.”
Launched in April, ESPN+ is the first of two Disney-owned streaming services that will hit the US market. The other is a Disney-branded service expected to debut sometime next year.
[READ] ESPN+ Tests its Luck With the Gamer Community, Will Live-Stream League of Legend Esports Events
One of the downsides of the service — for many consumers– is its lack of premiere games from the NFL and NBA. Instead, ESPN+ focuses on niche sports like rugby, and college sports fans underserved by existing linear offerings (like water polo enthusiasts and fans of schools in smaller athletic conferences).
The Top sporting events that the service will offer include daily MLB and NHL games, MLS out-of-market matches, live events from 20 college conferences, 20 PGA tour events, matches from three of the four Grand Slam Tennis tournaments, hundreds of Top Rank boxing matches, international cricket matches, almost 200 Canadian Football League games and approximately 200 English Football League matches. The streamer also recently signed a distribution deal with the UFC that will see a lineup of exclusive match-ups stream exclusively on the ESPN-branded service. In addition to live events, the service offers on-demand content and original programming not available on ESPN’s linear TV or digital networks.