WarnerMedia’s Turner Sports has signed NBA Hall of Famer Shaquille O’Neal to multiyear extension that will expand the outsized personality’s media scope beyond the hardwood.
A 15-time NBA All-Star and four-time NBA Champion, O’Neal will continue in his role as studio analyst for TNT’s Sports Emmy Award winning “Inside the NBA,” along with the “NBA on TNT Tuesday Night” franchise.
He’ll also appear on NBA TV and contribute to NBA.com. His NBA TV airtime will include a new show in development on “The Business of Basketball,” with more details to be announced at a later date. O’Neal will expand his “Shaqtin-a-Fool” franchise to include new genres and platforms, contribute podcasts to the WarnerMedia Podcast Network.
“Shaq is so critical to our success, and such a huge part of the heart and soul of our coverage,” Jeff Zucker, chairman, WarnerMedia News and Sports, said in a statement.
Tara August, SVP of talent services and special projects at Turner Sports, said O’Neal’s appeal to consumers resonates beyond sports.
Two explorations of American culture, the series finale of “A Chef’s Life” and season one of “Poetry in America” will come out on DVD and digital Jan. 8 from PBS Distribution.
“A Chef’s Life” has taken viewers on a journey to meet unsung farmers, home cooks and chefs, and elevate quintessential Southern dishes to new modern classics. After five seasons of the Emmy and Peabody Award-winning series, only a handful of dishes remain on host and author Vivian Howard’s bucket list. She tackles them all with the help of some friends in this series finale, The Final Harvest, which features some of the show’s most beloved personalities along with memorable flashbacks. Howard’s parents, Mrs. Scarlett and Mr. John, share intimate moments and reveal how their daughter’s success has changed their family. Her husband describes the impact of the series on his family and community.
“Poetry in America” gathers personalities from all walks of life to interpret, explore, and debate 12 American poems. Show host and Harvard professor Elisa New meets with athletes, poets, politicians, musicians, architects, scientists, actors and entrepreneurs to experience and share the power of poetry. Season one follows Carl Sandburg to Chicago and Emily Dickinson to Amherst. Along the way notable personalities such as actor Cynthia Nixon, former Vice President Joe Biden and architect Frank Gehry share their reflections on poems from Gwendolyn Brooks to Allen Ginsberg to Nas. Highlights include sports superstar Shaquille O’Neal reading “Fast Break” by Edward Hirsch and musician Herbie Hancock and former President Bill Clinton sharing their thoughts on Langston Hughes’ “Harlem.” The 12 American poems explored in season one are are “I cannot dance upon my toes” by Emily Dickinson, “Fast Break” by Edward Hirsch, “Those Winter Sundays” by Robert Hayden, “Hymmnn and Hum Bom!” by Allen Ginsberg, “Skyscraper” by Carl Sandburg, “Harlem” by Langston Hughes, “Musée des Beaux Arts” by W.H. Auden, “Shirt” by Robert Pinsky, “To Prisoners” by Gwendolyn Brooks, “The Gray Heron” by Galway Kinnell, “N.Y State of Mind” by Nas and “The New Colossus” by Emma Lazarus.
The basketball comedy Uncle Drew arrives on digital Sept. 11 and on 4K Ultra HD Combo Pack (plus Blu-ray and Digital), Blu-ray Combo Pack (plus DVD and Digital), DVD and on demand Sept. 25 from Summit Entertainment, a Lionsgate company.
Based on the Pepsi web series, the film tells the tale of a young team owner and Uncle Drew rounding up Drew’s old basketball squad to prove that a group of septuagenarians can still win. The film stars NBA All-Star Kyrie Irving (“Uncle Drew” Web Series); Lil Rel Howery (Get Out, TV’s “Friends of the People” and “The Carmichael Show”); four-time NBA champion and Basketball Hall of Famer Shaquille O’Neal (The LEGO Movie, Scary Movie 4); five-time NBA All-Star Chris Webber (Unexpected, Like Mike); five-time NBA All-Star, Basketball Hall of Famer and Olympic Gold medalist Reggie Miller (He Got Game, Forget Paris); three-time NBA slam-dunk champion Nate Robinson (TV’s “Mike & Mike” and “Ridiculousness”); NAACP Award-winner Erica Ash (Scary Movie 5, You Can’t Fight Christmas, TV’s “Survivor’s Remorse”); two-time WNBA champion, three-time WNBA MVP, four-time Olympic Gold Medal winner and Basketball Hall of Famer Lisa Leslie (Think Like a Man, Martin, Inconceivable); Tiffany Haddish (Girls Trip, Keanu, TV’s “The Carmichael Show”); and Nick Kroll (Sausage Party, Sing, TV’s “The League”).
Special features on 4K, Blu-ray and digital include seven deleted scenes; three behind-the-scenes featurettes; an animated short; and an audio commentary with director Charles Stone III. Special features on the DVD include two behind-the-scenes featurettes.
Both the 4K Ultra HD Combo Pack and the standard Blu-ray disc will feature Dolby Atmos audio.