New York and Dallas have teamed up for a documentary that will look at the careers of each team’s two most decorated players, as well as the many people they’ve made famous.
The film, titled New York: The Story of Hockey, is set to debut this summer on YouTube, and will air on HBO Sports.
The goal of the project is to showcase the diversity of the sport and its many facets, said Eric Johnson, a New York-based executive producer on the project, who is also the executive producer of the HBO series Inside the NHL.
“We wanted to explore all of the facets of the game, from the players to the fans and from the marketing side of things,” Johnson said.
“There’s no question that the sport has really changed and the way that it’s marketed has changed.
So we wanted to see what those players, the coaches and the fans who have been around for decades can bring to the table to bring this to life.”
The team has been exploring the idea of a documentary for several years, Johnson said, and recently commissioned a story about the NHL’s first female head coach.
Johnson said the goal of New York’s documentary is to provide a better understanding of the history and current state of the league, which he hopes will help bring about change in the way fans and players are treated.
“It’s not just about the players anymore, it’s about the fans as well,” Johnson explained.
“So what’s going on in New York right now, where are the fans?
What are the attitudes and what are the ways that players and fans can make changes?
So we’re really interested in looking into that.”
The documentary will look into the lives of some of the most decorated NHL players, including Hall of Famers Marian Hossa, Pavel Bure, Wayne Gretzky and Jaromir Jagr, and the many fans who are familiar with the franchise.
It will also look at what it’s like to watch a team from afar, as the Rangers are now on their third expansion team, and see what it is like to go to games as a visiting player.
The team also is looking to bring in some more former players, such as Nicklas Lidstrom, to help with the documentary.
The Rangers’ story will be told from their perspective, but Johnson said there’s no way the players are going to come out of this project without a story to tell.
“I think it’s going to be very interesting to look at some of their personalities and see how they’ve handled some of these issues in their lives,” he said.
The project was funded by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and the New York State Film Commission.