Showtime Sports has partnered with Maggievision Productions for a documentary chronicling the rise of basketball hotshot Ben Simmons.
“One & Done” will follow Simmons from his Australian upbringing, to high school and college in America, to the top of the rookie class for the NBA. Simmons is widely expected to be the league’s No. 1 draft pick when the 2016 selections are made on Thursday.
Stephen Espinoza, exec VP of Showtime Sports, said “over the last year, as Simmons has transitioned from teenager to young adult, he has also transitioned from the relative anonymity of a supremely talented high school player to the national and international limelight.”
The documentary began production two years ago under the direction of executive producers Maura Mandt, Dave Chamberlin and Josh Swade.
The core of the film focuses on Simmons’ time on the NCAA men’s basketball team at Louisiana State University where he played his “one and done” year in order to satisfy a rule regulating eligibility for the NBA Draft.
The “one and done rule,” initiated in 2006, requires that elite high school players who are ostensibly ready for the NBA are one year removed from graduation in order to be eligible for the Draft. The rule has been much debated since its inception, a subject that will be explored in the docu.
“The openness of Ben and his family during this remarkable transition in his life is truly unprecedented,” said Mandt. “Anyone can relate to a young person who has spent their life working toward a dream that is within their sights, while at the same time, not knowing what obstacles may lay ahead.”
Production for the documentary will resume this week as Simmons and other NBA hopefuls head to Brooklyn for the 2016 NBA Draft.
“One & Done,” co-directed by Mandt and Swade, and is scheduled for an October release, just before the start of Simmons’ rookie NBA season.