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Golf Channel Readies May 24 Debut for ‘Tiger Slam’ Documentary

Tiger Woods
CHRISTOF STACHE/AP/REX/Shutterstock

Could ESPN’s “Last Dance” be just the first salvo in a series of ambitious sports documentary efforts?

Golf Channel plans to debut “Tiger Slam,” a documentary film from the NBCUniversal-owned outlet’s own Golf Films unit, on May 24 at 8 p.m. The project examines Tiger Woods’ 10-month stretch of wins in 2000 and 2001, when the legendary golfer captured the sport’s four major championships in succession. The film, narrated by actor Michael Kenneth Williams, includes comments and perspective from caddie Steve Williams and swing instructor Butch Harmon, as well as recollections from various sports personalities who witnessed Woods’ incredible run.

“Tiger Slam” debuts a week after the conclusion as “Last Dance,” a much-celebrated ten-part docu-series centered around Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls, and on the same day as Turner Sports’ telecast of “The Match,” a golf game between Woods, Phil Mickelson, Tom Brady and Peyton Manning, a move executives no doubt hope will position the Golf Channel project at a moment of heightened interest in its main subject. Golf Channel had originally scheduled “Slam” to appear after the Masters in April, but when that event was postponed, executives decided to hold off on launching the film.

With most live sports scuttled by the coronavirus pandemic in the U.S., fans have welcomed nostalgia, whether it comes in the form of airings of classic games or documentary projects that examine a past era. ESPN recently decided to launch three of its “30 for 30” documentaries earlier than anticipated.

Golf Channel plans to air “Tiger Slam” with limited commercial interruption. CDW and US Bank will serve as co-presenting sponsors of the project.

The airing of the first two hours of “Last Dance” snared an average audience of 6.1 million viewers across ESPN and ESPN2, marking the two most-viewed original content broadcasts on ESPN’s networks since 2004, surpassing the 2012 film, “You Don’t Know Bo,” which captured an average viewership of 3.6 million.

“Tiger Slam’ is produced by Jarrod Ficklin, Israel DeHerrera and Kory Kozak. The film delves into each of Woods’ four major championship victories – the 2000 U.S Open; the 2000 Open; the 2000 PGA Championship; and the 2001 Masters –  and presents highlights and footage from each victory. 

Golf Films launched in 2014 the four-part Arnold Palmer biopic Arnie and has produced more than a dozen projects, including “Payne,” “27 Years: The Exoneration of Valentino Dixon” and “Chi Chi & Devo.”