Wide World of Sports (U.S. TV series)


Wide World of Sports (U.S. TV series)

"ABC's Wide World of Sports" was a long-running sports anthology show on American television that ran as a series from 1961 to 1998; the title continued to be used for general sports programs regularly until 2006 and still is occasionally used today. As the title suggests, it aired on the American Broadcasting Company.

History

Origins

The show debuted April 29, 1961, featuring the Drake Relays from Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa, along with the Penn Relays from Franklin Field in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and was the creation of Edgar J. Scherick through his company, Sports Programs, Inc. After selling his company to the American Broadcasting Company, Scherick hired a young Roone Arledge to produce the show. Arledge would eventually go on to become the executive producer of ABC Sports (as well as president of ABC News). Scherick became Vice President of Network Programming at ABC. Several years later, he became a film and television producer, with over seventy titles to his credit.

Successful spin-offs

In 1961, "Wide World of Sports" covered a bowling event in which Roy Lown beat Pat Patterson. The broadcast was so successful that in 1962, ABC Sports began covering the Pro Bowlers Tour.

In 1964, "Wide World of Sports" covered the Oklahoma Rattlesnake Hunt championships. The following year, "The American Sportsman" premiered, and it would stay on for nearly 20 years.

In 1973, the "Superstars" was first televised as a segment on "Wide World of Sports". The following year, he "Superstars" debuted as a weekly winter series that lasted for 10 years.

Athlete of the Year

In 1963, the producers of ABC Sports began selecting the Wide World of Sports Athlete of the Year. Its first winner was track and field star Jim Beatty for being the first to run an under 4 minute mile indoors. Through the years, this award was won by the likes of Muhammad Ali, Jim Ryun, Lance Armstrong, Mario Andretti, Wayne Gretzky, Carl Lewis and Tiger Woods. The award was discontinued in 2001.

The end of "Wide World of Sports"

In later years, with the rise of cable television offering more outlets for sports programming, "Wide World of Sports" lost much of its appeal. Ultimately, the "Wide World of Sports" name was used as an umbrella title for ABC's weekend sports programming. "Wide World of Sports" discontinued its traditional anthology series format in 1997.

In August 2006, ABC Sports was effectively displaced by the concept of "ESPN on ABC". The "Wide World of Sports" name continues to occasionally be revived for Saturday afternoon sports programming on ABC, most recently during the 140th Belmont Stakes as a tribute to the recently deceased Jim McKay.

Format

ports featured on "Wide World of Sports

"Wide World of Sports" was intended to be a "fill-in" show for a single summer season, until the start of fall sports seasons, but became unexpectedly popular. The goal of the show was to showcase sports from around the globe. It originally ran for ninety minutes on Saturday afternoons, and featured two or three sports per show. These included many types not normally seen on American television, such as hurling, rodeo, curling, jai-alai, firefighter's competitions, surfing, logger sports, demolition derby and badminton. Traditional Olympic sports such as figure skating, skiing, gymnastics, and track and field competitions were also regular features of the show. The broadcast was hosted for most of its history by Jim McKay.

"Wide World of Sports" aired from 5:00 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. Eastern Time and later 4:30 p.m. to 6:00 Eastern Time.

No. 1

"Wide World of Sports" was the first program to air coverage of Wimbledon, The Indianapolis 500, the NCAA Men's Basketball Championship, the Daytona 500, the U.S. Figure Skating Championships, the Little League World Series, The Open Championship, the X-Games, the Grey Cup, and many other events.

Introduction

The show was introduced by a stirring, brassy musical fanfare (composed by Charles Fox) over a montage of sports clips and dramatic accompanying narration by McKay:

It was written by Stanley Ralph Ross.

"The Thrill of Victory..."

The melodramatic introduction became a national catch phrase that is often heard to this day. While "the thrill of victory" had several symbols over the decades, ski jumper Vinko Bogataj, whose dreadful misjump and crash of March 21, 1970 was featured from the late 1970s onward under the words "...and the agony of defeat", became a hard-luck hero of sorts, and an affectionate icon for stunning failure. Previously, the footage played with that phrase was of another ski jumper who made a long, almost successful jump, but whose skis lost vertical alignment shortly before landing, leading to a crash. Later in the 1990s, an additional clip was added to the "agony of defeat" sequence after Bogataj's accident. Footage of a crash by Alessandro Zampedri, Roberto Guerrero and Eliseo Salazar during the 1996 Indianapolis 500 shows a car flipping up into the catchfence. The "oh no!" commentary that accompanies it, however, is dubbed from commentary by Benny Parsons of a different crash in a different race (1997 NASCAR Purolator 500). Bogataj's mishap is also commemorated in Rich Hall's book "Sniglets" as "agonosis," which is defined as "The syndrome of tuning in on "Wide World of Sports" every weekend just to watch the skier rack himself."

International versions

Canadian version

During the 1970s and 1980s, a Canadian version was aired by the CTV Television Network. Licensed by ABC, the CTV broadcast included a mix of content from the American show, and segments produced by CTV and its affiliates.

Mexican version

During the 1970s and 1980s, there was a Mexican version, aired by Imevision, the TV channel of the Mexican government, known as "DeporTV, El Ancho Mundo del Deporte" ("DeporTV, the Wide World of Sports"). The logo and motto were later dropped by TV Azteca.

Announcers

Hosts

*Jim McKay (1961-1986)
*Becky Dixon (1987-1988) [http://pqasb.pqarchiver.com/latimes/access/58214474.html?dids=58214474:58214474&FMT=ABS&FMTS=ABS:FT&date=Jan+09%2C+1987&author=Larry+Stewart&pub=Los+Angeles+Times+(pre-1997+Fulltext)&desc=Network+Bosses+Have+High+Praise+for+No.+1+Teams&pqatl=google Network Bosses Have High Praise for No. 1 Teams ] ]
*Frank Gifford (1987-1992)
*John Saunders (1993) [ [http://www.tv.com/john-saunders/person/114284/summary.html John Saunders - TV.com ] ]
*Julie Moran (1994-1995) [ [http://nl.newsbank.com/nl-search/we/Archives?p_product=DN&s_site=philly&p_multi=PI|DN&p_theme=realcities&p_action=search&p_maxdocs=200&p_topdoc=1&p_text_direct-0=0EB2A11066CE088D&p_field_direct-0=document_id&p_perpage=10&p_sort=YMD_date:D&s_trackval=GooglePM Search Results ] ]
*Robin Roberts (1996-1997) [ [http://www.tv.com/wide-world-of-sports/show/24908/summary.html Wide World of Sports - TV.com ] ]

Event announcers

*Mike Adamle
*Jack Arute
*Jules Bergman [ [http://www.tv.com/classic-wide-world-of-sports/show/35305/summary.html Classic Wide World of Sports - TV.com ] ]
*Bob Beattie [ [http://www.tv.com/classic-wide-world-of-sports/episode-7/episode/791508/summary.html Classic Wide World of Sports: Episode 7 - TV.com ] ]
*Larry Birleffi [ [http://www.tv.com/classic-wide-world-of-sports/episode-24/episode/813448/summary.html?om_act=convert&om_clk=episodessh&tag=episodes;title;1 Classic Wide World of Sports: Episode 24 - TV.com ] ]
*Tim Brant
*Charlie Brockman
*Howard Cosell
*Dave Diles
*Don Drysdale
*Chris Economaki [ [http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0190895/ "ABC's Wide World of Sports" (1961) ] ]
*Jack Edwards
*Larry Evans
*Bill Flemming
*Sonny Fox
*Terry Gannon
*Frank Gifford
*Curt Gowdy
*Phil Hill
*Keith Jackson
*Reggie Jackson
*Bruce Jenner
*Jim Lampley
*David Letterman
*Mickey Mantle
*Jim McKay
*Clem McSpadden
*Don Meredith
*Al Michaels
*Brent Musburger
*Larry Nuber
*Bud Palmer
*Sam Posey
*Bob Rose [ [http://www.tv.com/classic-wide-world-of-sports/episode-5/episode/789223/summary.html Classic Wide World of Sports: Episode 5 - TV.com ] ]
*Hughes Rudd [ [http://www.tv.com/classic-wide-world-of-sports/episode-10/episode/797600/summary.html Classic Wide World of Sports: Episode 10 - TV.com ] ]
*Bill Russell
*Maria Sansone
*Chris Schenkel
*O.J. Simpson
*Jackie Stewart
*Lynn Swann
*Al Trautwig
*Rodger Ward
*Jack Whitaker

Miscellany

*The 1971 Woody Allen film "Bananas" featured two parodies of "Wide World of Sports", featuring cameo appearances by Don Dunphy and Howard Cosell.

*The album version of an early-1970s Cheech and Chong hit song called "Basketball Jones" (a parody of a rhythm and blues number called "Love Jones") contained a prologue that parodied this program. It was called "White" World of Sports" and featured a not-too-bright commentator named "Red Blazer".

*An anachronistic joke early in the 1974 western film parody, "Blazing Saddles", had Slim Pickens yelling at his railroad crew, "What in the "Wide, Wide World of Sports" is a-goin' on here?"

*Walt Disney World's athletic facility is named Disney's Wide World of Sports Complex. Note that The Walt Disney Company acquired ABC in 1996.

*In 2007, "Time Magazine" named ABC's "Wide World of Sports" as one of 100 all-time TV shows.

*Weekend updates on [http://abcsportsradio.com/article.asp?id=341454 ABC Sports Radio] , a service transmitted through the ABC Radio Network, are branded as "ABC's World of Sports".

References

External links

*imdb title|id=0190895|name=Wide World of Sports
*Tv.com show|id=35305|title=Classic Wide World of Sports
* [http://www.80stvthemes.com/potpourri/sports.html The '80s TV Theme SuperSite]
** [http://www.80stvthemes.com/ra/WIDEWORLD.ra ABC's Wide World of Sports (1972)]
** [http://www.80stvthemes.com/ra/WIDEWORLD89.ra ABC's Wide World of Sports (1989)]
* [http://www.jumptheshark.com/forum/wide-world-sports/2189 Jump The Shark - Wide World of Sports]


Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Wide World of Sports — can refer to:*Wide World of Sports (U.S. TV series), screened on the American Broadcasting Company *Nine s Wide World of Sport, sports coverage on Australia s Nine Network *Disney s Wide World of Sports Complex, an athletic complex located in… …   Wikipedia

  • ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex — Coordinates: 28°20′13.5″N 81°33′21.6″W / 28.337083°N 81.556°W / 28.337083; 81.556 …   Wikipedia

  • Nine's Wide World of Sports — For other uses, see Wide World of Sports (disambiguation). Nine s Wide World of Sports The Nine Network s current Wide World of Sports logo. This edition of the logo was first aired in 2008. Division of: Nine Entertainment Co. Ma …   Wikipedia

  • Disney's Wide World of Sports Complex — Disneyparkinfo Entrance to Disney s Wide World of Sports Complex fgcolor= name=Disney s Wide World of Sports Complex location=Walt Disney World Resort opening=March 1997 [ [http://wiki.wdwhistory.com/wiki/Wide World of Sports.ashx WDWHistory.com… …   Wikipedia

  • Disney's Wide World of Sports Challenge — ESPN s Wide World Of Sports Seasonal Youth Challenge is also known as Disney s Wide World of Sports Challenge or ESPN s Seasonal Youth Athletic Expo or ESPN s Youth SKILL EXPOSITION. The Challenge is really a series of challenges that take place… …   Wikipedia

  • Wide Wide World — was a 90 minute documentary series telecast live on NBC on Sunday afternoons at 4pm Eastern. Conceived by Pat Weaver, the show was first introduced on June 27, 1955 as part of the Producers Showcase series. It returned in the fall as a regular… …   Wikipedia

  • World of Sport — can refer to:*World of Sport (UK TV series) on Britain s ITV network *World of Sport (Australian TV series) seen on Melbourne s HSV Channel 7 *World of Sport (Sydney, Australia TV series) seen on Sydney s TCN Channel 9 *Trevor s World of Sport… …   Wikipedia

  • World of Sport (UK TV series) — Infobox Television show name = World of Sport caption = Dickie Davies in the World of Sport studio. format = Sport runtime = 1230 to 1700 creator = presenter = Eamonn Andrews, Dickie Davies country = United Kingdom network = ITV num episodes =… …   Wikipedia

  • World Championship Snowmobile Derby — The World Championship Snowmobile Derby is the World championship snowmobile race. It is held at the Eagle River Derby Track along U.S. Route 45 in Eagle River, Wisconsin on the third weekend in January. Eagle River is known as the Snowmobile… …   Wikipedia

  • Sports car racing — is a form of circuit auto racing with automobiles that have two seats and enclosed wheels. They may be purpose built or related to road going sports cars.A kind of hybrid between the purism of open wheelers and the familiarity of touring car… …   Wikipedia


Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.