The greatest sports story never told is coming to the “Netflix of motor sports!” MotorTrend Group, a Discovery company, has acquired exclusive streaming rights to Blink of an Eye, the feature documentary film about two-time Daytona 500 winner Michael Waltrip and his star-crossed friendship with legendary stock car driver Dale Earnhardt.
The critically-acclaimed NASCAR documentary created by multi-Emmy Award-winning studio TAUBLIEB Films will premiere on Monday, February 3, 2020 on the MotorTrend App and MTGO (iOS and Android), the only subscription streaming service dedicated entirely to the motoring world. Blink of an Eye was produced with the support of Monster Energy and NASCAR.
The MotorTrend App and MTGO offers nearly 8,000 episodes and roughly 4,000 hours of world-leading automotive series and specials including the most complete collection of classic Top Gear (200+ episodes and specials spanning seasons one through 25), the upcoming all-new Top Gear America and every season of Wheeler Dealers, Roadkill, Fast N’ Loud, Garage Rehab, Overhaulin’, Bitchin’ Rides and many more. The MotorTrend App and MTGO is available for Prime Video customers in the U.S. on Prime Video Channels and on Amazon FireTV in addition to other media players and streaming devices including Apple TV, Roku, Google Chromecast and on the web, as well as across iPhone, iPad, and Android mobile devices.
Blink of an Eye is based on the New York Times-bestselling autobiography of the same name. The film was directed and produced by two-time Emmy Award-winning documentary filmmaker, Paul Taublieb. Blink of an Eye premiered in September 2019 and completed a successful nation-wide theatrical run in the United States, followed by a series of encore screenings in NASCAR hotbeds across the South.
An instant hit with fans and critics, Blink of an Eye has garnered a 90-percent Audience Score on the Rotten Tomatoes review platform. The media has attested the film an emotional appeal far beyond the world of racing.
Jim Amos at Forbes magazine wrote: “One of the strengths of this movie, and there are many, is its broad appeal that expands well beyond sports and NASCAR fans, and its relatability no matter the viewer’s age, social status, or political belief. [. . .] Blink of an Eye is a gripping fable about determination, heartbreak, fortitude, and never losing belief in oneself.” Racer Magazine praised Blink of an Eye: “NASCAR’s Answer to ‘Senna’ as a cinematic experience that transcends racing.”
Produced and Directed by TAUBLIEB Films, with support from Monster Energy, and in association with NASCAR, and distribution by 1091 Media (formerly The Orchard), the cinematic documentary chronicles former professional stock car racer Michael Waltrip and his tragic, star-crossed friendship with the late NASCAR legend, Dale Earnhardt Sr. The film is inspired by Waltrip and Ellis Henican’s 2011 New York Times best-selling book, In the Blink of an Eye: Dale, Daytona, and the Day that Changed Everything (Machete Books).
Multi Emmy-winning action and motorsports filmmaker Paul Taublieb brought the story to the big screen with his signature style of penetrating interviews that are interwoven with blistering energy. Taublieb created the film together with his wife, multiple Emmy Award-winning producer and director Susan Cooper, who is a founding partner of TAUBLIEB Films.
“When I heard the entire story of this odd couple but deep friendship and sacrifice between the great Dale Earnhardt and fun-loving Michael Waltrip, I was reduced to tears,” explains Mitch Covington. “I knew right away that the perfect person to make this into a feature documentary would be Paul Taublieb, who I recognize as one of the most creative documentary filmmakers working today.”
The theme song is an epic ballad performed by Bobby Capps of the legendary rock band 38 Special, as well as members of 3 Doors Down; Chris Henderson, Greg Unchurch, and Chet Roberts. The songwriter is no other than Mitch Covington, Monster Energy’s VP of Sports Marketing, who discovered Blink of an Eye through the New York Times best-selling book of the same name and brought Paul Taublieb on board as the director. The discovery is also highlighted in a documentary short film.
Blink of an Eye highlights Waltrip’s win (after a record-breaking 462 losses in a row) at the 2001 Daytona 500, a victory made possible after Earnhardt broke character as “The Intimidator” and “Man in Black” to assist Waltrip, rather than go for the win himself. Ultimately it was kindness that cost Earnhardt his life, as he endured a last lap fatal crash that was originally perceived by onlookers as minor. When Waltrip returned to the track a few months after the accident determined to avenge his friend’s death by going for a win, he instead found a uniquely heroic and selfless way to pay back Earnhardt; one for believing in him when no one else did, and two, for allowing him to win after 16 frustrating seasons.
“Great stories are a gift, and this one has all the elements,” said the film’s director and producer Paul Taublieb. “Triumph, tragedy, the unexpected, and amazing characters. It’s a story that transcends sports, much like Free Solo (2018) or The Endless Summer (1966), bringing a human quality that anyone can relate and be engaged to, whether you are a sports fan or not. My film resonates with themes of perseverance, grit, determination and above all, the redemptive and transformation of friendship, even in tragedy.”
Previous to releasing on the MotorTrend App and MTGO, Blink of an Eye became available to own or rent on all major digital platforms, including iTunes and Amazon Video, as well as in DVD and Blu-Ray format. The film will be available trackside at every NASCAR track for purchase on disc this season. The Official NASCAR Member’s Club now offers Blink of an Eye at a special members-only discounted rate.
In major 2020 news, Blink of an Eye will take to the skies as featured on-board viewing on domestic and international flights served by Delta Airlines, Emirates and Cathay Pacific. In developing news, TAUBLIEB Films has secured a deal with a major Hollywood Studio to bring Blink of an Eye to the big screen as a major dramatic feature film. Scripting and casting are already underway, stay tuned for more information!
The critically acclaimed documentary by TAUBLIEB Films begins streaming exclusively on the MotorTrend App and MTGO beginning Monday, February 3, 2020.