Tom Brady, Michael Strahan and Gotham Chopra are launching a new sports media startup


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The Tremendous Bowl is over and the stadiums throughout the nation that when held hundreds of followers on any given Sunday can be principally empty within the low season, however Tom Brady continues to be at work.

The quarterback who will undeniably go down in NFL historical past as one of many biggest of all time is already eager about his subsequent act. Alongside Michael Strahan (one other soccer nice who has made the transition into pop cultural icon) and Gotham Chopra — the producer, director and former conflict correspondent — Brady is launching a brand new sports activities media startup.

Referred to as The Religion of Sports, the brand new startup, which is looking for round $three million in outdoors capital, is neither The Players’ Tribune, Derek Jeter’s media platform for athletes to tell their own stories, nor TraceMe, Russell Wilson’s access-focused app for athletes and celebrities.

As an alternative, Brady, Strahan and Chopra, alongside chief government Ameeth Sankaran, a former investor with a household workplace out of Texas and longtime pal of Chopra’s, need to create a multi-platform storytelling enterprise that features like an old-school studio — devoted to sports activities — that tells one of the best tales within the medium that’s most applicable for them.

If this looks like a thesis looking for a know-how platform, that’s as a result of it's — nevertheless it’s unattainable to low cost the Rolodexes that Strahan, Brady and Chopra (the son of Deepak Chopra) have available and the facility that their community can wield.

It’s additionally unattainable to low cost their dedication to sports activities… and the tales that may be advised by means of the lens of gamers and their followers.

For Strahan, who has already made the bounce to turning into a capital “C” movie star, that is one other hyphen so as to add to his multi-hyphenated profession of all-star-talk-show-host-business-mogul, however for Brady, who may retire as soon as the end of next season (if the Pats make one other Tremendous Bowl look), there’s undoubtedly a way of what is going to come subsequent.

The crew first got here collectively round 5 years in the past when Brady met Chopra in Los Angeles.
“I feel in our very first assembly, he shared with me the thought of Faith of Sports activities, and I used to be hooked instantly!,” Brady wrote in an e mail. “Over the subsequent few years, Gotham and I continued the dialog and the friendship advanced very naturally from there.”

Strahan had loved a long-standing friendship with Brady and thru mutual buddies was related with Chopra, who floated the thought of the corporate to him. The thought resonated. “I really like the storytelling facet and with the ability to produce content material that’s totally different and galvanizing,” Strahan wrote in an e mail.

Whereas each Brady and Strahan are among the many biggest athletes to play the sport of soccer, Chopra brings the attention, and thoughts, of the last word fan.

For him, the inspiration for the corporate goes again to one thing out of a Norman Rockwell illustration. Image an immigrant father and his younger son sitting within the stands at Fenway Park, watching the Pink Sox take the sector. That have, and the sense of group that it instilled, turned a focus for the youthful Chopra and a theme that may recur many times in his work.

Over a succession of Food plan Cokes on the Beverly Wilshire Lodge one afternoon earlier this yr, Chopra and Sankaran laid out their imaginative and prescient for the corporate.

“As increasingly momentum was created round ‘The Faith of Sports activities’ present, Gotham turned satisfied that it was greater than a present — it was a motion,” Sankaran stated. “Our first step was to make Tom and Michael not government producers within the present however companions within the enterprise.”

Ameeth Sankaran and Gotham Chopra with Erik LeDrew, a producer at Faith of Sports activities

Consider it as a brand new media contender to previous line properties like ESPN — with movie star athletes and producers driving the creation of latest properties. “We’re listening to within the market an openness for experimentation [and] we’re prepared to be revolutionary round what a enterprise mannequin will appear to be,” Sankaran says.

For Chopra, sports activities is the last word non-denominational church, and the narratives which are spun by means of its lens round legendary heroes like Strahan and Brady who carry out Herculean feats, or the pilgrimages that followers take to the stadium on recreation day, maintain the identical significance as another liturgy.

His companions within the endeavor really feel the identical. “I’ve all the time seen sports activities as an unimaginable type of group and strategy to categorical your self, so I used to be excited by the potential of the Faith of Sports activities to have a serious hand in increasing that,” writes Brady. “I hope our tales empower individuals to take a look at life and the world of sports activities in a deeper and extra constructive means.”

Because the mechanics and applied sciences for storytelling evolve, it presents a chance for brand spanking new enterprise fashions to emerge, Sankaran says. And Brady, Strahan and Chopra are already profiting from new mediums for creating and distributing the tales they need to inform.