AMERICAN MASTERS: Plimpton! Starring George Plimpton as Himself

AMERICAN MASTERS: Plimpton! Starring George Plimpton as Himself

Friday, June 17 at 9:00 p.m.

Explore the tall-tale life of George Plimpton -- writer, editor, amateur sportsman, actor and friend to many.

The documentary  -- on  PBS's acclaimed "American Masters" series -- is both a chronicle of one of the last century’s most intriguing characters, as well as a cinematic adaption of his nuanced and funny literary style.

Using Plimpton’s own narration, new interviews with friends, family and contemporaries, and extensive archival material, the film creates a compelling portrait of a one-of-a-kind person who lived fully, strangely and incredibly.

Plimpton (1927-2003) co-founded and worked as the editor of influential literary magazine The Paris Review for 50 years (1953-2003). The Paris Review and Plimpton’s widow Sarah Dudley Plimpton, granted filmmakers Tom Bean and Luke Poling full access to George’s private archives, including previously unseen material.

Aside from his work at The Paris Review, Plimpton wrote for Sports Illustrated; hung out with U.S. Presidents and was part of the Kennedys’ inner circle; played quarterback for the Detroit Lions; got Willie Mays to pop out in Yankee Stadium; photographed Playboy models; played goalie for the Boston Bruins; performed with the New York Philharmonic; boxed against light-heavyweight champion Archie Moore; acted alongside John Wayne, Warren Beatty and Matt Damon; and authored more than 15 books, including Out of My League (1961), Paper Lion (1966) and The Bogey Man (1967). 

Top photo: George Plimpton practicing with the Boston Bruins, 1977. (Photo Credit: Sports Illustrated/Laemmle Zeller Films)

Photo at right: George Plimpton photographing birds in Africa. (Credit: Freddy Plimpton)