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HBO Documentary on Broad Street Bullies Debuts May 4

Flyers hosting invitation-only screening on April 13

Wednesday, 03.31.2010 / 1:35 PM / News
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HBO Documentary on Broad Street Bullies Debuts May 4
The HBO Sports documentary Broad Street Bullies, a look at one of pro sports’ most polarizing teams, the legendary Philadelphia Flyers Stanley Cup championship squads of the 1970s, debuts on Tuesday, May 4 at 10 p.m. This exclusive presentation will tell the backstories of these engaging and colorful athletes, who won back-to-back Stanley Cups in 1974 and 1975 with a bold, aggressive style that sparked controversy and criticism.

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Bobby Clarke (left) and Bernie Parent of the Philadelphia Flyers carry the Stanley Cup as they celebrate their series-winning victory over the Boston Bruins, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, May 19, 1974. (Flyers Photos)

 “HBO’s Broad Street Bullies is an excellent and well-produced documentary that portrays the evolution of the Philadelphia Flyers,” said Comcast-Spectacor chairman and Flyers founder Ed Snider. “It brings back many wonderful memories for me, and it uncovers some new insights into the great story of our two Stanley Cup Championship teams. We are truly honored that this part of Philadelphia Flyers history will be seen nationally on HBO. I want to personally thank producer George Roy and his talented team for this historical tribute to the Flyers.”
 
“This film explores how a group of characters, who also happened to be an extraordinarily talented collection of hockey players that enjoyed contact on the ice, formed one of the most prominent and controversial teams in pro sports history,” says Ross Greenburg, president, HBO Sports. “We are going to re-trace the steps that led to the love affair between the city and the team, and show how to this day these players are revered in Philadelphia and despised elsewhere.”
 
Comcast-Spectacor, along with HBO and Comcast, will host an invitation-only screening at the Wachovia Center on Tuesday, April 13, for Flyers season ticket holders, sponsors, premium seat customers, promotional partners and community leaders. The Flyers Alumni who star in the documentary will attend the premiere screening. Season ticket holders and sponsors will receive their invitation via email.
 
“This special premiere is our way of saying ‘thank you’ to our fans, our sponsors, and our partners for their outstanding support of the Flyers over the past 43 seasons,” said Comcast-Spectacor President Peter Luukko who also serves as Flyers President. “This documentary is a moving tribute to our founder Ed Snider, as well as a great group of guys, who are so deserving of this film, we wanted to have as many of our fans celebrate with them as possible.”
 
Playing before adoring fans at the Spectrum, the Flyers rose to prominence in the 1970s under the guidance of shrewd coach Freddie Shero. With larger-than-life figures like Dave “The Hammer” Schultz, Bobby Clarke, Bill Barber, Bernie Parent, Ed Van Impe, Bill Clement, Rick MacLeish, “Moose” Dupont, Bob Kelly, Joe Watson and Gary Dornhoefer, the team won many games, fought in just about all of them and made numerous enemies.  The club’s popularity soared as their physically imposing and sometimes bloody style generated headlines across North America.
 
Although the franchise did not exist until 1967, the team rose to national prominence in just a few short years, and some NHL teams would see their home attendance double when the Flyers came to town.  The club became a favorite of other hardscrabble cities and towns where blue-collar communities were taking an economic beating.
 
In a bizarre twist, singer Kate Smith’s rendition of “God Bless America” became the Flyers’ good luck charm.  Eventually, the team that showcased players with gap-toothed grins, funny hair and goofy nicknames evolved into one of the NHL’s elite franchise.  In 1976, the Flyers engaged the vaunted Soviet Central Red Army team in the finale of an exhibition series that would do little to ease the cold war tension between the two nations.
 
[This documentary] brings back many wonderful memories for me, and it uncovers some new insights into the great story of our two Stanley Cup Championship teams. We are truly honored that this part of Philadelphia Flyers history will be seen nationally on HBO." - Ed Snider
Broad Street Bullies includes interviews with Snider and former Flyers standouts Bobby Clarke, Bill Barber, Bill Clement, Gary Dornhoefer, Bob Kelly, Bernie Parent, Ed Van Impe, Bobby Taylor, Don Saleski, Joe Watson, Orest Kindrachuck, and Dave “The Hammer” Schultz.
 
The executive producers of Broad Street Bullies are Ross Greenburg and Rick Bernstein; senior producer, Joe Lavine; produced by George Roy; music scored by Brian Keane; narrated by Liev Schreiber.
 
Other HBO airings include Wednesday, May 5 at 2:35 a.m.; Saturday, May 8 at 11 a.m.; Monday, May 10 at 8:30 a.m.; Wednesday, May 12 at 12 p.m.; Thursday, May 20 at 6 p.m.; Sunday, May 23 at 9 a.m.; and Tuesday, May 25 at 8 p.m. It will also air on HBO On Demand from Wednesday, May 5 through Monday, June 7.

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