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Sunday, October 24, 2010

Charismatic 30 for 30: What Happened??

You can say I was more than excited when the ESPN 30 for 30 schedule was announced last fall and that one of the one hour documentaries was about Charismatic giving horse racing some time in the World Wide Leader's spotlight. First off it caused me to scramble to read up on the horse, as it was before I started following the sport full-time. What I found out was that Charismatic was quite the champion, winning both the 1999 Kentucky Derby and Preakness, before his unfortunate breakdown in the third leg of the Triple Crown, the Belmont Stakes. His jockey, the late Chris Antley was heroic in jumping off the horse and saving him just past the wire, holding up the colt's left front leg, which was broken in two places. I recently purchased Elizabeth Mitchell's Three Strides Before the Wire, a story "detailing the major people in this extraordinary horse's life, including the trainer, owners, and jockey Chris Antley, whose own tragic story matches that of his horse."

I've really enjoyed the ESPN series, especially the USFL, 7/17/94, Mike Tyson/Tupac and LLWS episodes. I missed the Jimmy the Greek one and have my eye open for the replays. So when I went to the schedule for the remaining four episodes and didn't see Charismatic, I had a sinking feeling that something was wrong. When I searched for an answer, all I could find in the interwebs was a PaceAdvantage thread of one asking the same question I was and the IMDb site listing which was still showing it as active. I then decided to email the contact address on the official site and after a few days received the following (very generic) response:

Hi Gene,

Charismatic will still be an ESPN Films production. Please stay tuned for more details.

Thanks for watching and keep telling us what you think!

Thanks,
The 30 for 30 Team


The email response generated more questions than answers in my mind. If it is still going to be a production, does that mean it won't be a 30 for 30 documentary? Why was it taken down on the official website after being on it for months? Was someone not cooperating (trainer, late jockey's family or owner) with the producers? I emailed all of these questions to them but have not yet received a response since last Thursday. Very odd indeed.

Here's hoping we hear something more definitive soon. Stay tuned.

4 Comments:

MH said...

Thanks for the update. The "30 for 30" series is a great production, and I'd love to see what they could do with a horse racing story.

SaratogaSpa said...

Make sure you get the Jimmy the Greek 30 for 30 episode-very well done with a nice ode to Jimmy's love of the horses-I did a post on it when it first aired.

EquiSpace said...

For those checking back in...here's the latest email received from ESPN:

Gene,

Charismatic will no longer be part of the 30 for 30 series but will still air as part of ESPN Films. More details will be released shortly.

Thanks so much,

The 30 for 30 team

Anonymous said...

Man that really stinks. I was really looking forward to it. I hope they at least show a detailed documentary of the this and hopefully soon. What a bummer.

 

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