Now that HBO has rebounded the talents of Bill Simmons, a well known on-air sports commentator and writer, from ESPN after his 14 years there, people have been wondering about how he’d fit into the network’s sports coverage. We now know what the first of his plans are for the premium cable service.

Bill Simmons and Jonathan Hock, a documentary filmmaker whose 30 for 30 series is popular at ESPN, are teaming to make a movie about Andre the Giant. Yes, the Andre the Giant. According to Page Six, the duo is set to begin collaborating on the film sometime soon.

Do you know what this means? There will be a whole documentary about one of the 1980's most famous and formidable professional wrestlers. Scores of Generation X-ers will be on board for this project when it finally debuts. He’s right up there with Hulk Hogan, Ric Flair, “Macho Man” Randy Savage and “Rowdy” Roddy Piper as a true icon of the era’s pro wrestling circuit.

Until now, HBO has focused on boxing coverage and Real Sports with Bryant Gumble, a show that has interviews with athletes from a wide variety of sports along with day in the life type segments. But adding a series of documentaries to the programming slate is an excellent way to broaden the scope of their viewership for people who want even more in-depth coverage of their favorite classic sports stars. And, Andre the Giant is a great subject to kick off that series.

For those of you who were completely oblivious to pro wrestling in the 1980s, here’s a primer on Andre the Giant. The former French farm boy was indeed a giant; he was born with a disorder known as acromegaly which caused him to grow for his entire life. By the time he began wrestling in the 1970s, he was already at 7’4” and 500 pounds. It didn’t take long for his career to take off, and he became known as “The 8th Wonder of the World”, a name that stuck with him for his entire career. He eventually took his talents to Canada, and his immense star power led the head of America’s World Wrestling Federation to sign him and finally give the moniker Andre the Giant.

He made his acting debut in 1975 by playing “Big Foot” in The Six Million Dollar Man. That led to roles in other popular TV shows like B.J. and the Bear and The Greatest American Hero. He also had a small part in Conan the Destroyer in 1984, and, a few years later, went on to take his most recognized and well-loved role in The Princess Bride as Fezzik.

Andre the Giant’s role in The Princess Bride should be enough to love the man. Really, if you’ve seen the movie but don’t remember Fezzik or didn’t like him, well, shame on you. HBO and Simmons have made a solid decision in picking Andre as the subject for their first documentary together. So, be prepared to get all your now middle-aged friends together and relive the 1980s glory days that helped the wild world of wrestling get its no-holds-barred, highly theatrical reputation.
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