Wrexham FC awaits Hollywoods arrival
This week Hollywood pair Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenney held a call with the Wrexham Supporters Trust to share their plans for the club, if they were to be successful in purchasing the Welsh team. The presentation mentioned a Netflix-style documentary that would track the club's journey under the guidance of Reynolds and McElhenney. While football documentaries aren't new, one involving some of Hollywood's finest would certainly make it different.
A doc following a team can either be totally enthralling or quite bland, and that’s the risk a lot of clubs have taken when they have allowed cameras behind closed doors. However, if the story can grab hold of the viewer and take them on a journey, then there can be big rewards at the end of it.
Two clubs who provided the viewer with a rollercoaster of a story has been Sunderland FC and their doc 'Sunderland Til I Die' and Leeds United's 'Take Me Home' - both showcased the highs and lows associated with supporting a team and what a football team means to the local community.
As their stories captured eyeballs from around the world, both have talked about the positive impact their respective documentaries has had. Leeds United has said its helped them attract new partners and investment, while figures show that Sunderland's doc helped its marketing efforts with an increase in visitors to its website, subscriptions to its YouTube channel and a growing profile across the world.
Additionally, a good documentary (or film) can act as a recruitment tool for players. Callum Wilson and Kenedy have both mentioned that the film 'Goal' helped them in signing for Newcastle United.
The majority of these documentaries so far have focused on the men's side of the game, and as I discussed with Sue Anstiss MBE a few weeks ago, there are some fantastic opportunities to tell the stories of women's teams. Nevertheless, Chelsea FC Women currently have a doc in the pipeline, that is being captured by Fulwell 73 (the team behind Sunderland Til I Die) and I'm sure it won't be long before we hear about a documentary following the newly formed NSWL team Angel City FC.
In summary, Reynolds and McElhenney will be very aware of all of these factors and I am sure, if they get the vote, they will turn Wrexham FC and its community into a household name across the world through the power of storytelling. While Reynolds and McElhenney will do their best to improve the club's on-field success from the stands, it will be away from the pitch that these two will show their Hollywood firepower. As don’t be surprised if a Wrexham FC documentary turns out to be one of the most talked about sports docs over the next few years. Remember, they will have the marketing brilliance of Ryan Reynolds.