Adidas Family Limited Series in the Works from ‘Ferrari’ Producer



The rise of the Adidas empire is getting the limited series treatment after independent film producer Niels Juul (“Ferrari,” “Killers of the Flower Moon”) inked a deal with the family of the brand’s founder, Adi Dassler.

Juul’s No Fat Ego Productions and AD Legacy, the company set up by the Dassler’s grandchildren, have entered into a partnership to produce a fictional limited series based on Dassler’s life and the global brand he created from his small German village. The series will also capture the intense family drama and eventual split between Dassler and his brother Rudolf, who created Puma, launching one of the longest-running brand rivalries in history.

Juul — who was one of the founding partners of Von Dutch Originals before transitioning to the film business — describes the project as being “at the creative intersection of ‘The Crown’ and ‘Succession.’” An early synopsis of the limited series explains that the story will be presented from the point of view of Dassler’s oldest daughter Inge, capturing her father’s “uncompromising passion for sports and his obsession through innovation.”

In a statement announcing the deal, Juul explained why the Dassler family story was so attractive. “I am a big fan of real-life stories, and as much as I liked Enzo Ferrari’s tale, I was immediately drawn to the story of Adi. It’s a great dramatic, intense and brutal tale but also at times hilariously funny with the rivalry between the two brothers,” he begins.

“But what truly attracts me to the story is how one visionary man and sports idealist completely defied convention at the time,” Juul continues. “From making shoes for gold medalist Jesse Owens against the will of Hitler in the 1936 Berlin Olympics to supporting Katrine Switzer, the first woman to run the Boston Marathon in 1967 even when she — as a woman — was not permitted, or developing the first female tennis shoe for Billie Jean King as she was fighting for equal rights for women in sports. Through these game-changing events in sports history, I see a great opportunity to tell not only a breathtaking family and brand saga, but also shine an intimate and personal light on some of the most iconic and memorable events in sports history.”

AD Legacy’s Horst Bente shared a statement on behalf of the family, saying, “We are thrilled and excited to have partnered with Niels Juul and his team. Niels’ European roots, his expertise, and most importantly his vision of how to tell our family’s multi-decade story makes him a perfect partner for us. We are very much looking forward to being involved in all aspects of this project and support it fully. We are grateful also for the support of Adidas as it is our common desire to share this incredible piece of sports history.”

The project is in early development with No Fat Ego and their associate producers in the U.S., U.K. and Germany working with historians at Adidas, along with the team at AD Legacy, over the coming months to research and shape the narrative for the likely 12-episode limited series.


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