The documentary will premier on the BBC and Virgin Media Television early next year.
Sports doc producer Noah Media Group has released a ‘first look’ image from its forthcoming production, Finding Jack Charlton, and revealed broadcast deals with the BBC and Virgin Media Television.
The film was directed by Gabriel Clarke (Bobby Robson: More Than A Manager; Steve McQueen: The Man & Le Mans) and Pete Thomas (Take His Legs), and tells the largely untold story of the English World Cup winner and Irish hero.
Finding Jack Charlton was shot on location in Ireland and England, and details Charlton’s previously undocumented life with dementia.
The documentary features contributions from Charlton’s family, including his wife Pat and son John, alongside major figures in football, music, film and politics.
During the production, Charlton’s family provided access to detailed, hand-written notes Jack Charlton made and kept safe throughout his career.
These offer a new level of understanding into ‘Finding Jack’.
The production includes unseen archive footage behind the scenes with Charlton and the Ireland team during the World Cup in 1990 and on the road to their qualification for the 1994 World Cup in the USA.
Noah Media Group has announced a deal with the BBC (UK) and Virgin Media Television (Ireland) for the film’s broadcast premiere in early 2021.
Prior to that, Finding Jack Charlton will receive a UK theatrical release in late 2020, via Noah Media Group’s distribution arm, NoahX. NoahX will also manage international sales.
The film is produced by Noah Media Group’s John McKenna and Torquil Jones. Former Republic of Ireland captain Andy Townsend is among the film’s executive producers.
Co-director Gabriel Clarke said: “Jack Charlton led a fascinating life on so many levels and his achievement in football is unique. To be able to tell his story against the background of the final year of his life, when he faced perhaps his greatest challenge, enabled us to frame his incredible career from a whole new perspective. It was a privilege to work with his family and to make a film that became so much more than we expected”
Controller of BBC Two, Patrick Holland, added: “I am so delighted that this documentary will be coming to BBC Two. Jack Charlton was a giant of a man, a footballer of legendary achievements and a manager who helped transform a nation. This is a very special film, giving intimate access to Jack and his family in his last year, exploring the journey and impact of his extraordinary life.”
Bill Malone, director of content Virgin Media Television, added: “This is a remarkable documentary about a remarkable man. Finding Jack Charlton charts the glory days of Irish football set against the backdrop of a changing Ireland and his battle with dementia in his final years. It is a touching portrait of an Englishman who became one of Ireland’s greatest”.