HBO Sports, WWE and the Bill Simmons Media Group are teaming up on a feature documentary about pro-wrestler and actor Andre The Giant.
The doc will look at the life and career of the wrestling legend in the WWE, starting with his upbringing in France, to his success in the ring and the entertainment industry. Roussimoff exhibited signs of gigantism — a condition that causes abnormal height and size — in his teen years. He was later diagnosed with acromegaly — the abnormal growth of hands, feet and face — in his 20s. As an adult he stood 7’4″ and weighed 520 pounds.
He began training in Paris in his teens and, after traveling the world wrestling circuit, in 1970 made his Japanese debut, which put him on the radar of Vince McMahon Sr., the founder of what is now known as World Wrestling Entertainment.
Roussimoff’s larger-than-life personality also took him to Hollywood where he starred in TV sitcoms and films during the ’70s and ’80s including Rob Reiner’s The Princess Bride. Roussimoff died of congestive heart failure in 1993.
Emmy-winning director and producer Jason Heir will direct the doc, with Bill Simmons, who joined HBO in the summer of 2015, serving as executive producer.
“Going back to 2007 and 2008, when I was creating and developing ’30 for 30′ for ESPN, Andre’s story rode the top of every single sports documentary wish list I ever made,” says Simmons, in a statement.
The film will be the first time HBO Sports and WWE have partnered together. It will feature never-before-seen footage and interviews with WWE stars, sports and entertainment execs, athletes, media, friends, family and associates to create a comprehensive and intimate portrait of one of the WWE’s most beloved, but largely, unknown figures.