Meek Mill to Produce DAZN Doc About U.K. Boxer Anthony Joshua

Meek Mill -Roc Nation Publicity 2-H 2019
Courtesy of Roc Nation

The film, produced by Jay Z's Roc Nation, will follow Joshua's training for the June 1 fight against Andy Ruiz Jr.

Meek Mill and Jay-Z’s Roc Nation are partnering with sports streamer DAZN on a documentary about heavyweight fighters Anthony Joshua and Andy Ruiz Jr. 40 Days: Joshua-Ruiz will be presented as multi-part short-form episodes and premiere May 21 on Mill’s YouTube channel. Episodes will debut each Tuesday and Thursday in the two weeks leading up to the fight. A special final edition of 40 Days will premiere on NBC Sports Network and several regional sports networks prior to the June 1 showdown.

The 40 Days doc franchise — which follows the fighters during the grueling eight-week training regime before a fight — kicked off earlier this month with the LeBron James-Maverick Carter produced doc about the Canelo Alvarez fight on May 4.

“DAZN has created a program that explores a fighter's heart and soul,” said Mill in a statement. “They tell the story of what makes a true champion. I love being part of a project that tells of their grit, sacrifices and dedication outside the gym. It’s those things that show true character and should be lauded just as much as the knockouts in the ring.”

Added Jamie Horowitz, executive vp content: “The purpose of 40 Days is to pair globally famous boxers with compelling storytellers to give fight fans an original look at the eight weeks leading up to a fight,”. “It’s a series which is meant to let creative people be creative. We are excited to have Meek Mill tell the story of Anthony Joshua’s first fight in America through his unique lens.”

Joshua, the 29-year-old former Olympic super heavyweight, is selling out stadiums in his native U.K. He packed 90,000 fans into Wembley Stadium for his 2018 title fight against Wladimir Klitschko.

DAZN, which is headed by former ESPN president John Skipper, has made inroads in the direct-to-consumer space in part by doing deals with fighters. Last year, he signed Alvarez (who is represented by Oscar de la Hoya’s Golden Boy) to a rich $365 million deal to broadcast 11 fights. The platform also has deals with Matchroom Boxing, GGG Promotions, Bellator MMA, World Boxing Super Series and Combate Americas.