FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE April 20, 2009
Rick Reilly Hosts New ESPN Series – Homecoming with Rick Reilly
to Officially Debut April 22; Summer Series Beginning July 2
John Elway, Josh Hamilton, Richard Hamilton, Tony Hawk, Michael Phelps, Jerry Rice, Kurt Warner and Others Featured
ESPN’s new series – Homecoming with Rick Reilly — challenges that old adage “you can’t go home again.” Hosted by 11-time Sportswriter of the Year Rick Reilly, the show will officially debut Wednesday, April 22, at 7 p.m. ET on ESPN HD/ESPN with an episode on Josh Hamilton of the Texas Rangers in his hometown of Raleigh, N.C. The following night, Pro Football Hall of Famer John Elway returns to his high school in Granada Hills, Calif., at 7 p.m. The shows are the first two of an eight-part series featuring one-on-one, hour-long interviews of today’s top names in sports. Reilly will bring his unique style of storytelling to the series set in the athletes’ hometown or formative place surrounded by friends and family they’ve known throughout their life.
The remaining six original episodes of Homecoming with Rick Reilly will debut as a summer series Thursdays, July 2 – Aug. 6, at 7:00 p.m. ET on ESPN HD/ESPN and are scheduled to feature Richard “Rip” Hamilton of the Detroit Pistons in his hometown of Coatesville, PA; Skateboard legend Tony Hawk at his middle school in San Diego, Calif.; Olympic champion swimmer Michael Phelps in Baltimore, MD; Jerry Rice, one of the greatest players in NFL history, in his adopted home of San Francisco, Calif.; Arizona Cardinal’s quarterback Kurt Warner in his hometown of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, and others.
Rick Reilly said, “I hope people enjoy these Homecomings more than I enjoyed my Homecoming, in 1976, when my date threw up in my Rambler.”
“What’s special about this show is the very personal nature of the athlete’s experience. They choose the venue, the audience, and the places we go. As a result we end up with a truly one-of-a-kind look at the life and career of some of our greatest athletes,” said Anne Powell, senior producer, specials, for ESPN Content Development.
The show theme will be Kanye West’s Homecoming, which features Chris Martin from Graduation.
Website www.espn.com/homecoming will offer additional bonus content, athlete background, host blogs and podcasts.