MLS and Apple announce all-access docuseries chronicling 2024 season


MIAMI BEACH, Fla. (AP) — Apple TV and Major League Soccer are expanding their collaboration, announcing Thursday that the looming MLS season will be chronicled in a new all-access docuseries similar to the ones that have given fans a deep, different look at golf, auto racing and tennis in recent months.
The eight-part series is already in production and will span from the preseason all the way through the MLS Cup final in December. Apple and MLS are teaming with Box to Box Films to make the new series happen, with executive producers James Gay-Rees (“Senna,” “Formula 1: Drive to Survive,”), Paul Martin (“Make or Break,” “Formula 1: Drive to Survive”) and Warren Smith (“Make or Break,” “Full Swing”).
The league is entering the second year of a 10-year media rights deal with Apple TV, which enjoyed big numbers after the arrival of Lionel Messi at Inter Miami. Specifics were never released, but Apple CEO Tim Cook credited Messi’s arrival as the reason why subscriber targets were surpassed.
“This is a critically important project for us, the league providing the right level of access, helping identify the right stories to tell because it’s a huge opportunity,” MLS executive vice president of media Seth Bacon said at the league’s media day Thursday.
“If you think about the momentum we have right now with the partnership with Apple, Messi joining the league, launching Leagues Cup, the 2026 World Cup happening in the United States, Canada and Mexico, the momentum is there. We can capture that and use this as another catalyst to attract new fans to tell them what’s happening in the league.”
The new series remains untitled, for now, with no official launch date released. Apple is adding it to a lineup of soccer docuseries that already includes “Messi Meets America,” a six-part documentary with exclusive behind-the-scenes access to Messi in his debut season — along with “Messi’s World Cup: The Rise of a Legend,” chronicling what he’s done with Argentina’s national team.
Apple was part of the group that pitched Messi during his process of deciding whether to join MLS last year. The streaming service’s 10-year deal with the league is worth at least $2.5 billion, a huge jump over its previous deal — one that netted an average of $90 million per season under an eight-year agreement with Fox, ESPN and Univision.
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