Tokyo’s Rakuten TV is turning the lens on soccer star Andrés Iniesta in the upcoming Andrés Iniesta – The Unexpected Hero.
Billed as the first-ever documentary about the athlete (pictured), it begins with his debut at the Barcelona Youth Academy in La Masía, follows his rise to fame playing for FC Barcelona and Spain (where he helped win the 2010 World Cup), and wraps with his arrival at Vissel Kobe in Japan.
The star has taken an active role in the production – and it features tributes from renowned football players such as Lionel Messi, Neymar, Luis Suárez, Pep Guardiola and Xavier Hernández.
The project is produced by Rakuten in collaboration with Spanish production company Producciones del Barrio. It’s being penned by journalist Marcos López, who is also the author of the player’s official biography, The Artist: Being Iniesta.
Roll-out begins this spring in Europe, Japan, the U.S. and Southeast Asia. In Europe, it will air on AVOD Rakuten TV; in Japan on Rakuten TV and Rakuten Sports; and in the U.S. and Southeast Asia on Rakuten Sports and Rakuten Viki. Global distribution will follow.
Says Iniesta of the film: “My story is the story of a person who tries to overcome any obstacle to be the best version of himself. It is a story about difficulties from an optimistic perspective and I hope people find inspiration in it.”
Rakuten TV screens in 42 countries and is part of Rakuten Inc., one of the world’s leading Internet services companies. Rakuten, with its HQ in Japan, has partnerships with FC Barcelona, the NBA, the Golden State Warriors, Davis Cup and Spartan Race.
Watch the trailer: