Showtime To Air Docu-Series On Leonard Hagler Hearns Duran
It’s widely regarded as the greatest era of non-Heavyweight championship boxing and Showtime announced on Monday that they will release a documentary series in June based on the fantastic Hall of Fame careers of Roberto Duran, Sugar Ray Leonard, Thomas Hearns and Marvelous Marvin Hagler.
The series dubbed “The Kings” will tell the tales of how those legendary names each rose to iconic status on their own and then, became forever intertwined in the history of boxing from Lightweight to Middleweight by fighting each other repeatedly from 1980-90.
Showtime announced on social media and elsewhere that the four-part series will begin airing on Sunday night June 6th,
— SHOWTIME SPORTS (@SHOsports) April 12, 2021
From the Showtime official release,
“THE KINGS spotlights boxing’s evolution from the end of Muhammad Ali’s era to the era of the Four Kings, set against the seismic political and socio-economic shifts taking place in the United States. The Four Kings rose to fame as the presidency of Jimmy Carter and economic recession gave way to the boon of 1980s capitalism and excess harnessed by the administrations of Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush.
Through in-depth interviews and archival footage, the series also examines the very personal battles that each man waged on his unique journey to the center of the sports world.
“These four men defined an era in boxing,” said Stephen Espinoza, President, SHOWTIME Sports. “Their individual stories, forever linked by the spectacular battles they waged, reflect a tumultuous period in American culture and history.
THE KINGS takes the viewer beyond the glorious action of some of history’s most memorable prizefights to illuminate each man’s dramatic journey and the societal context that made them stars of sports and popular culture.”
The timing of the June release comes on the heels of recent anniversaries in April of the EPIC 1985 Hagler-Hearns three round battle, which is still regarded 35 years later as the greatest “short fight” in championship boxing history. And, also the April anniversary of the 1987 Leonard dethroning the seemingly unbeatable Hagler in an amazing comeback for Sugar Ray off a three year layoff.
We had a fantastic, in-depth discussion on Leonard-Hagler and the impact historically and financially of “The Super Fight” with it’s author Brian Doogan on our “Big Fight Weekend Podcast.” Watch for more below:
Again from Showtime,
“From 1979 through 1985, as a mark of their incredible achievements, the Boxing Writers Association of America bestowed these men the coveted title of “Fighter of the Year” annually with the lone exception of 1982 – with Leonard, Hagler and Hearns each winning twice. In the nine world title fights between them, there were four knockouts and three of the bouts were recognized by The Ring magazine as “Fight of the Year.” The Ring magazine “Round of the Year” (and to many, the round of all time) from round one of Hagler-Hearns is, perhaps, the most iconic single round of boxing of all time.
Fittingly, THE KINGS premieres in the 45th anniversary year of Leonard winning an Olympic gold medal, and the 40th anniversary year of the welterweight world title unification battle between Leonard and Hearns, widely considered their greatest fight and a symbol of the era.
THE KINGS is produced by Box To Box Film in association with Ingenious Media. The series is executive produced by James Gay-Rees (Amy, Senna, Drive To Survive) and Paul Martin (Diego Maradona, Drive To Survive), produced by Fiona Neilson (Oasis: Supersonic, Coldplay: A Head Full of Dreams) and directed by Mat Whitecross (Oasis: Supersonic, Road To Guantanamo, Coldplay: A Head Full of Dreams).”