Ken Burns’: Muhammad Ali
A new four-part documentary directed by acclaimed-filmmaker Ken Burns follows the life of one of the most consequential men of the 20th century, a three-time heavyweight boxing champion who captivated millions of fans with his combination of speed, agility and power in the ring, and his charm, wit and outspokenness outside of it. At the height of his fame, Muhammad Ali challenged Americans’ racial prejudices, religious biases and notions about what roles celebrities and athletes play in our society, and inspired people all over the world with his message of pride and self-affirmation.
This new series, which was in development for six years, was also written and co-directed by Sarah Burns and David McMahon, whose previous collaborations with Burns include The Central Park Five (2012), Jackie Robinson (2016) and East Lake Meadows: A Public Housing Story (2020).
Sundays, July 3 through July 24, at 9pm on ThinkTV14
Round One: The GreatestSunday, July 3, at 9pm on ThinkTV14
Boxer Cassius Clay rises up the amateur ranks to win gold at the 1960 Olympics. He turns professional, sharpening his boxing skills and honing his genius for self-promotion. In 1964, he upsets Sonny Liston to become heavyweight champion.
Round Two: What’s My Name?Sunday, July 10, at 9pm on ThinkTV14
Cassius Clay publicly joins the Nation of Islam and takes the name Muhammad Ali. When he refuses induction into the Army, he is stripped of his title and forced into exile. After three years he returns to the ring, but he’s lost a step.
Round Three: The RivalrySunday, July 17, at 9pm on ThinkTV14
(1970 – 1974)
Muhammad Ali battles his fiercest rival, Joe Frazier, and the U.S. government, as he attempts to regain the heavyweight title. He first loses to – and then defeats – Frazier, but to become champion again, he will have to beat George Foreman.
Round Four: The Spell RemainsSunday, July 24, at 9pm on ThinkTV14
Muhammad Ali shocks the world by defeating George Foreman, winning back the heavyweight title and becoming the most famous man on Earth. After retiring in 1981, he travels the world spreading his Islamic faith and becomes a symbol of peace and hope.
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