About Religion of Sports

Religion of Sports is a six-part docu-series that examines unique examples where sports profoundly influence societies and cultures in a manner that extends far beyond merely entertainment value. From the pilgrimage hundreds of thousands of fans make to NASCAR events this to witness men and machines making miracles, to the Holy War intensity of the rivalry between neighboring teams in the Scottish Football league, Religion of Sports will take viewers on a weekly global journey, celebrating the transcendent power of sports. New England Patriots Quarterback Tom Brady, Pro Football Hall of Famer Michael Strahan and Gotham Chopra are executive producers of this original sports documentary series.

bradyABOUT TOM BRADY

After playing college football for the University of Michigan, Tom Brady was drafted by the Patriots in the sixth round of the 2000 NFL Draft. In Brady’s 14 seasons as a starter, the Patriots have earned six trips to the Super Bowl, the most for any quarterback in history, winning four titles.

Brady has won three Super Bowl MVP (Super Bowl XXXVI, XXXVIII, and XLIX) and two league MVP awards (2007 and 2010), has been selected to 11 Pro Bowls, and has led his team to more division titles (13) than any other quarterback in NFL history. At the start of the 2016 season Brady was fifth all-time in career passing yards, tied for third in career touchdown passes, and sixth in career passer rating. His career postseason record is 22–9. He has won more playoff games than any other quarterback, and appeared in more playoff games than any player at any position.

As a result of his abundance of both regular and postseason accolades, many analysts and sports writers consider Brady as one of the greatest quarterbacks in NFL history, if not the greatest.

michael-croppedABOUT MICHAEL STRAHAN

Emmy winner and Super Bowl Champion Michael Strahan currently co-hosts ABC’s “Good Morning America” and serves as an analyst for “Fox NFL Sunday.” This summer, Strahan hosted the top-rated primetime game show favorite “$100,000 Pyramid” on ABC, produced by SMAC Entertainment in association with Sony Pictures Television. It was recently picked up for a second season.

Strahan is Co-Producing “Religion of Sports,” an original documentary series that examines unique examples of sports’ cultural and spiritual impact in regions around the world, airing exclusively on AUDIENCE Network on both DIRECTV and AT&T U-verse in November. Strahan recently sold his first scripted series to ABC titled HOBBS, which follows Tommy Hobbs, a former Heisman Trophy winner who joins the Miami police force after not being drafted by the NFL.

Prior to joining the ranks of the top sports broadcasters in the country, Strahan’s entire 15-year football career was typified by the charisma and sportsmanship that made him a seven-time Pro-Bowler and one of only four players ever to lead the NFL in sacks for two seasons. His spectacular NFL career resulted in Strahan being named to the 2014 Pro Football Hall of Fame class, the sport’s highest honor.

Strahan lead the New York Giants to a dramatic Super Bowl victory over the previously undefeated New England Patriots in 2007. In 2001, Strahan completed what is widely considered to be one of the greatest seasons ever for a defensive player, breaking the 18-year-old NFL single season sack record with 22.5 sacks. His record still stands today. The charismatic leader of the New York Giants was named the NFL’s 2001 Player of the Year by Sports Illustrated and the 2001 Defensive Player of the Year by the Associated Press, making him the first New York Giant to win the award since Lawrence Taylor.

From 2012-2016, Strahan co-hosted the top-rated, nationally syndicated entertainment talk show “LIVE with Kelly and Michael.” Strahan and co-host Kelly Ripa were the co-winners of the 2015 and 2016 Daytime Emmy for “Outstanding Entertainment Talk Show Host.” In addition, Strahan was nominated for a 2014 Sports Emmy Award in the category of “Outstanding Sports Personality – Studio Analyst.”

In 2015, Strahan released his best-selling book, “Wake Up Happy: The Dream Big, Win Big Guide to Transforming Your Life,” which includes personal stories and motivational advice to inspire readers to turn up the heat and go from good to great in pursuit of their personal ambitions. The paperback edition was released in October 2016.

Acting on his entrepreneurial spirit, Strahan introduced COLLECTION by MICHAEL STRAHAN in the fall of 2015, a men’s tailored and accessories line and the recent addition of shoes, available exclusively at JCPenney. Capitalizing on the success of his partnership with JCP, Strahan launched MSX, a men’s Athleisure line, in May 2016, with plans to expand into additional categories in the coming seasons.

With a natural affinity for people and an effortless ease in front of the camera, Strahan’s previous hosting duties include “Pros v. Joes,” which pitted amateur contestants against professional athletes in a series of athletic feats. Strahan co-hosted the family cable show “Backyard Stadiums” on DIY Network and built outdoor recreational projects with his co-host. In addition, he participated in the kid-friendly show “Giants on Deck” and the YES Network show “Sack and Renovate,” in which he led a guided tour inside his 100-year-old home. Strahan also tackled the world of scripted network primetime television as the star of “Brothers,” a 30-minute sitcom on Fox from Sony Pictures Television. Strahan made a cameo appearance in the hit film “Magic Mike XXL” and lent his voice in the animated film “Ice Age: Collision Course.”

Dedicated to many charitable works, Strahan donates his hands and heart to numerous charities including St. Jude Children’s hospital, The USO and HELP USA.

Born in Houston, Texas, Strahan spent most of his youth in Germany, where his father Gene was stationed in the U.S. Army. Strahan returned to the U.S. for a portion of high school and soon was recruited to play football at Texas Southern University. As a senior at Texas Southern, Strahan was selected first team All-America by the Associated Press when he recorded a school-record 19 sacks and 62 tackles, 32 of which cost opposing teams 142 yards in combined losses.

Now partnered with longtime friend Constance Schwartz to form SMAC Entertainment, Strahan brings his skills, determination, leadership, experience and humor to the multi-dimensional talent management, branding, and production company. In addition to representing dynamic and globally recognized talent, SMAC Entertainment produces strong and diversified content, and has a multitude of projects setup with primetime cable and broadcast networks including HBO, SHOWTIME, ABC, E!, USA Network, NICKELODEON and FYI, as well as Amazon’s streaming video service. For the past three years, the company has produced the highly rated and critically acclaimed Nickelodeon Kids’ Choice Sports Awards, with Strahan hosting the Inaugural Awards Show in 2014. In addition, SMAC produced the innovative HBO documentary series STATE OF PLAY: HAPPINESS, which explores athletes’ retirement transition in relation to larger society and PLAY IT FORWARD, a documentary about famed football tight end Tony Gonzalez and his brother, which premiered as the opener of the 2015 Tribeca/ESPN Sports Film Festival and was acquired by Showtime. Additional projects are in development through CNBC, NFL Network and others.

A father of four, Strahan currently spends his time between New York and Los Angeles.

gotham-headshotABOUT GOTHAM CHOPRA

Gotham Chopra is a filmmaker, author, and entrepreneur. His recent documentary on NBA superstar Kobe Bryant entitled Kobe Bryant’s Muse was the highest performing sports documentary ever on the Showtime Network. Within weeks his feature documentary on Indian cricket superstar Sachin Tendulkar entitled The Little Master ran on ESPN as part of their award winning ’30 for 30’ film franchise. His award-winning 2012 documentary Decoding Deepak about his father Deepak Chopra is available on Netflix. And his latest works on NY Giants WR Victor Cruz (I am Giant) aired in October 2015 on Showtime and Red Sox icon David Ortiz (The Last Walk Off) on ESPN during the summer of 2016. Gotham is also a contributing Executive Producer to LeBron James’ digital platform Uninterrupted.

Prior to his feature doc work, Gotham was an award winning journalist reporting from countless warzones and interviewing a wide range of Global leaders – from President Clinton to the His Holiness the Dalai Lama. He was integrally involved in the formation of Current TV, co-founded by former Vice-President Al Gore which launched in 2005.

Gotham’s varied experience in journalism, publishing, and entertainment had him identified by Newsweek Magazine as one of the “most powerful and influential” South Asians worth watching. He blogs regularly at www.intent.com which he co-founded” as well as www.huffingtonpost.com. Contrary to his “spiritual upbringing,” he lives and dies by his hometown Boston sports teams, which he actually thinks in pretty spiritual and is converting into a multimedia brand called The Religion of Sports which will launch as a 6-part docu-series on Directv’s Audience Network in November 2016.