ESPN will debut the next installment in the Peabody and Emmy award-winning 30 for 30 series, “Breakaway,” about WNBA superstar and activist Maya Moore, on July 13. Directed by Rudy Valdez, the documentary explores the story of Moore, who was one of the best basketball players in the world when she stepped away from the sport for a remarkable reason: to fight for a man she believed was wrongly imprisoned. In 2019, after four WNBA championships, two Olympic gold medals, a WNBA MVP award, three All-Star MVPs, and a scoring title, Moore decided to take a sabbatical from basketball at the age of 29 to devote herself full-time to working for the release of a man named Jonathan Irons, who was wrongly convicted of burglary and assault and sentenced to 50 years in prison. “Breakaway” chronicles a search for justice, and a relationship that changed the lives of two people forever. Valdez’s previous film, “The Sentence”, winner of the US Documentary Audience Award at the Sundance Film Festival and the Primetime Emmy for Exceptional Merit in Documentary Filmmaking, explored similar themes about the criminal justice system. “Breakaway” premieres July 13 at 9 p.m. ET on ESPN. Trailer: https://youtu.be/Y20XDkrfB6E
“I wanted to make this film not only to honor and celebrate the incredible criminal justice reform advocacy that Maya has been working toward with Jonathan Irons, but also to tell a very human story that is often told inhumanely,” said director Rudy Valdez. “I hope the film sheds light on how society demonizes both those behind bars and those connected at home and inspires people to find inner strength and fight against a system that does not want us to win.”
“Breakaway” will premiere on July 13 at 9 p.m. ET on ESPN. It is executive produced by Robin Roberts, Reni Calister and John R. Green of Rock’n Robin Productions, as well as Lindsay Kagawa Colas. The film will be available to stream on ESPN+ and the ESPN App immediately after its premiere and will re-air on ABC August 8th. The entire 30 for 30 library is also available on demand exclusively on ESPN+. Advance press screeners, additional information, including film clips and director statements and bios, are available upon request. Follow 30 for 30 on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
About ESPN Films
ESPN Films has been an industry leader in documentary filmmaking since its inception in March 2008, producing more than 100 documentaries that have showcased some of the most compelling stories in sports. The high quality of storytelling, highlighted by the Peabody and Emmy Award-winning 30 for 30 series and the Academy-Award winning documentary “O.J.: Made in America,” has led to record viewership as well as multiple honors and critical acclaim. Additional projects from ESPN Films over the years have included 30 for 30 Shorts, Nine for IX, SEC Storied and record-breaking docu-series “The Last Dance.” The entire 30 for 30 library is available for streaming on ESPN+.