February 5 – The move by clubs into general entertainment television programming via reality style behind-the scenes shows has now been taken a step further with Barcelona reportedly in preliminary talks with Disney-owned Pixar over the making of an animated feature film.
Pixar, owned by Disney, would produce a film with the club as the main protagonist, most likely using image rights of players as characters.
The move into animated film/television with Barcelona would not be the first for a sports franchise with the Harlem Globetrotters having blazed a trail back in the early 1970s with a Saturday morning cartoon produced by Hanna-Barbera and CBS Productions in the US.
The show featured animated versions of players from the famous basketball team who, while travelling as part of the team, would typically get involved in a local conflict that leads to one of the Globetrotters proposing a basketball game to settle the issue.
To ensure the Globetrotters’ defeat, the villains rig the contest; however, before the second half of the game, the team always finds a way to even the odds, become all but invincible, and win.
Barcelona already have a weekly show in the US via streaming service Verizon go90, Inside Barça while Real Madrid recently ran an eight-part docuseries, Hala Madrid, on Facebook’s video platform.
Elsewhere Netflix have unveiled a fly-on-the-wall series with Italian champions Juventus that will debut on the streaming service in 2018, and Manchester City are partnering with US OTT broadcaster Amazon Prime for their own football docuseries.
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