Acclaimed filmmakers Michael Bonfiglio and Judd Apatow will direct ESPN’s award-winning 30 for 30 series on the 1980s New York Mets duo of Dwight “Doc” Gooden and Darryl Strawberry. Bonfiglio is known for directing and producing documentaries such as Metallica: Some Kind of Monster, Oprah’s Master Class, Paradise Lost 3, and 30 for 30: You Don’t Know Bo. Apatow is a comic guru and has worked as a writer, director, and producer; he is known for such films as The 40-Year-Old Virgin, Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story, Forgetting Sarah Marshall, Pineapple Express, and the upcoming 2016 comedy Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping. And now Apatow and Bonfiglio team up together for 30 for 30: Doc and Darryl.
The official film summary is as follows:
“When they were good, they were the biggest stars on a team that captured New York City and the 1986 World Series. But when they were bad, Doc Gooden and Darryl Strawberry broke the hearts of Mets fans. ‘They were going to be our guys for years,’ laments Jon Stewart in this evocative yet searing 30 for 30 documentary directed by Judd Apatow (Trainwreck) and Michael Bonfiglio (You Don’t Know Bo). Reunited at a diner in Queens, the pitcher and the power hitter look back on the glory days of the mid-’80s and the harrowing nights that turned them from surefire Hall of Famers into prisoners of their own addictions. Listening to Doc talk about missing the parade down the Canyon of Heroes, or Darryl counsel others at his ministry, you can only wish that these two very different men had not followed the same destructive path.”
Apatow and Bonfiglio added,
“We were interested in understanding the men behind the headlines, and what drove them to their spectacular highs and lows…We hope that this film humanizes Doc and Darryl, and in doing so sheds light on issues that we can all relate to in our own lives or the lives of those around us.”
— ESPN Films 30 for 30 (@30for30) May 17, 2016
Strawberry and Gooden’s statistics alone is enough of a reason to make a documentary on them. Darryl Strawberry was known as a home run slugger, holding a career batting average (BABIP) of.282, and 335 home runs. In 1986, alongside Gooden, Strawberry helped lead the Mets to a World Series Championship. He did the same for the New York Yankees in 1996 and 1999. Strawberry was also the recipient of two Silver Slugger Awards and was named Rookie of the Year in 1983. World Series Champion “Doc” Gooden is a legendary pitcher. With 2,293 career strikeouts, a career ERA of 3.51, and the recipient of multiple awards including the Cy Young Award in 1985, his career is nothing short of spectacular.
But although Strawberry and Gooden acquired many accolades during their careers, it is perhaps the controversies that are seared into public memory. Gooden was arrested multiple times for different reasons, including driving while intoxicated, punching his girlfriend, and assaulting a police officer, just to name a few. Strawberry was also arrested multiple times for reasons including solicitation of sex (to an undercover police officer) and violating his probation.
Bonfiglio is known for his master storytelling documentaries. In You Don’t Know Bo, the viewers were taken through the journey of Bo Jackson’s short lived, however incredible, career. Bonfiglio co-produced the documentary Paradise Lost 3, which is the third segment in a story about the West Memphis Three. This was a group of three teenagers who were sentenced to prison for the murder of three boys, although many thought the three were innocent. Apatow may be known for outrageous comedies, but he is also a master storyteller. In Forgetting Sarah Marshall, Apatow helped tell the story of Peter (Jason Segel), a man figuring out how to move on in life after a heartbreaking relationship. The 40-Year-Old Virgin‘s many laugh-out-loud moments was equal to its endearing scenes and character depth. Apatow also provided audiences with many heartfelt moments and complicated characters in the film Knocked Up. ESPN’s 30 for 30 has provided such hits as Bad Boys, Winning Time, The U (Parts 1 & 2), Broke, and Jordan Rides the Bus. The series seems to be a perfect fit for storytellers Bonfiglio and Apatow, and soon the duo’s Doc and Darryl will join the long list of 30 for 30 hits.
[Photo credit: Frazer Harrison/Getty Images]