Football's first family is getting the ESPN Films treatment.
The network's SEC Storied series, which presents "the opportunity to explore the rich athletic history of the Southeastern Conference," will launch its third season this fall with a Manning-centric documentary called The Book of Manning.
Premiering on Tuesday, Sept. 24, at 8 p.m. ET on ESPN, and narrated by John Goodman(!), the film is an up-close look at Peyton and Eli's childhood and how being raised by NFL Hall of Famer Archie Manning came to shape their futures.
Here's how the SEC Digital Network teases the film:
A father-and-son story written into the pages of football folklore, it can be argued that no family has had more influence on a sport than the Mannings. Archie – the patriarch - a star quarterback at the University of Mississippi and then with the New Orleans Saints, followed by oldest son Cooper, whose football dreams were cut short by a spinal condition, then sons Peyton and Eli – both of them quarterbacks, All-SEC, number one draft picks, back-to-back Super Bowl champions and MVPs.
It's certainly rich filmic subject matter and seems like a worthwhile exploration of a story most people think they know, but might not be duly informed about.
The trailer above shows some of the never-before-seen photos and videos from the Manning boys' childhood and hints that the narrative might have some darker-than-anticipated moments.
Yes, there's a happy ending, but between Cooper's tragic injury and the death of Archie's father, the road to this current act wasn't always lined with roses.
Rory Karpf, an ESPN Films veteran, directed The Book of Manning, his third addition to the SEC Storied canon. He also shot 2012's Lolo, about U.S. Olympian and former LSU Tiger Lolo Jones, and 2013's Miracle 3, which covered the 2008 tornado that hit Atlanta during the SEC men's college basketball tournament.
Given Karpf's dramatic bona fides, the film's marketable subject matter and the quality of the trailer above, expectations are high for the next episode of SEC Storied.
Leave a comment if you are/aren't pumped for the documentary.