LIFETIME GOES FOR GOLD WITH BIOPIC OF
THE GABBY DOUGLAS STORY
Two-Time Olympic Gold Medalist GABBY DOUGLAS to appear in the faith-filled movie event that will air February 1
Network’s “Raise the Bar” contest to engage students nationwide.
LOS ANGELES, CA (January 13, 2014) – The inspiring true story of irrepressible gymnastics phenomenon Gabby Douglas, who thrilled the world and captured America’s heart by winning two gold medals in spectacular fashion at the 2012 London Olympics, is coming to the Lifetime Channel on February 1.
Produced by Sony Pictures Television and directed by Gregg Champion, director of Lifetime’s blockbuster original movie Amish Grace, THE GABBY DOUGLAS STORY details Gabby’s rise against overwhelming odds to become the first African American ever to be named Individual All-Around Champion in Artistic Gymnastics at an Olympic Games. A refreshingly Christian-toned script and endearing performances by Sydney Mikayla (Whitney), who portrays Douglas during her childhood, and Imani Hakim (Love Reign Over Me), who portrays her teenaged and young adult years, make this a must-see television event for families and aspiring athletes of all age groups. The real-life Gabby Douglas appears in the film, which also stars Peabody Award-winning actress Regina King (Southland, Ray) and Golden Globe® and Emmy®-winner S. Epatha Merkerson (Law & Order).
A prodigy from a very young age, Gabby Douglas originally made her mark on the world of competitive gymnastics at age eight, winning numerous state championship titles throughout her age group career. While her star was fast rising in the arena, Gabby and her family faced dire economic and personal challenges at home and she made the difficult decision to leave her mother Natalie (King), three siblings and grandmother (Merkerson) in Virginia Beach and move to Des Moines, Iowa, to train with renowned coach Liang Chow (Brian Tee, The Wolverine) and pursue her single-minded dream of Olympic glory. Buoyed by her intense faith and love from her family, Gabby made it onto the 2012 U.S. Women’s Gymnastics team, which faced unyielding and unforgettable competition in the London Games. Her sacrifice and perseverance were triumphantly rewarded with Team Competition and Individual All-Around gold medals, placing Gabby and her teammates – known as “The Fierce Five” – among the world’s all-time greats in the sport of gymnastics.
THE GABBY DOUGLAS STORY is directed by Gregg Champion (Amish Grace) from a script written by Maria Nation (Lifetime’s The Two Mr. Kissels). It is executive produced by Zev Braun and Philip Krupp (Lifetime’s A Girl Like Me: The Gwen Araujo Story) and produced by David Rosemont (Lifetime’s Bonnie & Clyde).
To celebrate the premiere of THE GABBY DOUGLAS STORY, Lifetime is launching a contest and inviting schools across the country to take the Gabby Douglas Raise the Bar Pledge. Schools may enter for a chance to win $10,000 by encouraging their students to submit pledges to raise the bar in their own lives. For the Official Rules, please visit www.raisethebarpledge.com.