Willie Mays Announces HBO Documentary on 90th Birthday

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Hall of Fame outfielder Willie Mays is celebrating his 90th birthday on Thursday, but that isn't the only reason baseball fans are celebrating. 

Deadline reported Thursday that Mays, the oldest living Hall of Famer, will be the subject of a new HBO documentary. HBO PR confirmed the announcement. 

“Some say that throughout my life I have inspired others, but the truth is that so many have done this for me,” Mays told Deadline. “My teammates, my friends, and of course the fans mean so much to me. And so I hope this documentary can give back to all of them something enjoyable and inspiring in return.”

Mays is widely considered one of the greatest baseball players of all-time. He was a two-time NL MVP, 24-time All Star and a 12 time Golden Glove winner, and he tallied 660 career home runs in MLB. Additionally, he's the record holder for most putouts (7,095) and most extra-inning home runs (22) by any player.

For the first 21 years of his career, Mays played for the New York/San Francisco Giants before switching to the New York Mets in partway through the 1972. He played one more season with the Mets before retiring in 1973. 

Deadline reported that the documentary is in production with Brooklyn Boheme co-director and The Hippest Trip in America author Nelson George leading the charge with the untitled piece. It's expected to debut on HBO next year before landing a digital home via HBO Max. 

According to Deadline, the film will include archival footage of Mays's legendary catch in Game 1 of the 1954 World Series, among other highlights of his more than 20-year career. 

“Willie Mays is an American icon, a prime example of black excellence and baseball’s greatest player,” director George said to Deadline. “It’s an honor to be able to chronicle his journey from the Negro Leagues in Alabama, stardom with the Giants in Harlem and to the game’s apex in San Francisco.”

Mays was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by Barack Obama in 2015. 

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