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Showtime to air documentary on Dean Smith

Smith, shown here coaching an NCAA 1st-round game in 1997, is the subject of a Showtime documentary set to air in March.
Smith, shown here coaching an NCAA 1st-round game in 1997, is the subject of a Showtime documentary set to air in March. SCOTT SHARPE

A documentary on late UNC basketball coach Dean Smith will air on Showtime in March.

The network announced on Tuesday that production on the documentary, titled “DEAN SMITH,” began in early 2014 and is being directed and edited by George Roy (“Mantle,” “Pistol Pete: The Life and Times of Pete Maravich”).

Many of Smith’s former players, including Michael Jordan, James Worthy, Larry Brown, Eric Montross and J.R. Reid, will be featured in the film, reflecting on the impact Smith had on their lives. Charles Scott, the first African American scholarship athlete at Carolina, recounts Smith’s “compassion and humanity.” Even Smith’s fiercest rival, Duke basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski, speaks about the coach’s legacy.

In a press release, Showtime Sports VP Stephen Espinoza said the documentary “paints the picture of a man who was not just an accomplished basketball coach, but also a passionate activist with a life-long commitment to social justice. . . . He taught and led both his student-athletes and the community at large with a consistent example of excellence and integrity."

Smith, who won two NCAA national championships at UNC, died on Saturday at his home in Chapel Hill, surrounded by his wife and five children.

“DEAN SMITH” is scheduled to premiere on March 25 at 9 p.m.

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