With no experience as a professional videographer, Ed Sabol won the rights to get video tape of the 1962 NFL championship game. In 1964, the company that Sabol started became NFL Films, and Ed and son Steve Sabol would pilot NFL Films from a tiny company to the most successful sports video company in the history of video companies. NFL Films broke new ground in just about every aspect of writing, editing, filming, subject matter… you name it, NFL Films and Steve Sabol blazed a trail for it. In fact, Steve Sabol won a staggering 35 Emmys for his work in writing, cinematography, editing, directing, and producing. Unfortunately for NFL Films, Steve Sabol is no longer a part of the company. Steve Sabol died of brain cancer at age 69 in Moorestown, New Jersey.
”Steve was a legend in this business – a dynamic, innovative leader who made NFL Films the creative force it is today,” said ESPN President John Skipper. ”The work he and his dedicated and talented team create every day is one of the many reasons why so many more fans love the game of football today.”
From the blooper reel to putting microphones on players and even hiring epic voiceover artists like the late Harry Kalas and the later John Facenda, NFL Films has been hugely influential and Steve Sabol is the guiding light behind that influence. Here’s hoping that the company will continue to produce the best sports work on television despite his absence, if only to honor his legacy.
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