FIRST: The Story of the London 2012 Olympic Games is scheduled to air Sunday, August 4, at 2 p.m. EST on NBC. The documentary follows the journey of 12 first-time Olympic athletes as they prepare to compete in London.
The film, the only one made about the London Games supported by the International Olympic Committee, shows viewers both sides of the Olympics, with stories of triumph and defeat. American swimmer Missy Franklin’s run at four gold medals is chronicled, as is the fifth place finish of the American men’s gymnastics team.
The film was first screened during a one-night event in cinemas across the country on May 30.
“Not only am I honored to be a part of this film,” Franklin said, “but I’m also excited to experience the Olympic journeys of the other amazing athletes involved in this project.”
It is the first official Olympic film made following the death of long-time documentarian Bud Greenspan, who had produced Olympic documentaries dating back to 1976. Caroline Rowland, who had previously produced a film for Sochi, Russia’s successful bid for the 2014 Olympic Winter Games, said she wanted to take the film in a different direction, rather than emulate the late director.
“It’s not a sage or serious document of the Olympic Games,” Rowland told USA Today prior to the screening. “This film was always intended to be something that gave young people the opportunity to believe that whatever they pursued in life, there is something they can take from the Olympic Games and from the Olympic spirit and values.”