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Netflix’s Next Dance: A $50 Million Jerry Jones Docuseries

The new Netflix docuseries about Jerry Jones the ’90s Cowboys has already drawn comparisons to ’The Last Dance.‘
The new Netflix docuseries about Jerry Jones the ’90s Cowboys has already drawn comparisons to ‘The Last Dance.’ Photo: JOCE/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images
Matthew Belloni
July 2, 2023

The first rule of media: The NFL always wins. A docuseries about Jerry Jones and the heyday of the Dallas Cowboys just sold to Netflix, and the price is just under $50 million, according to two sources familiar. The deal isn’t done, but Netflix emerged as the winner of a bidding war with ESPN, after Amazon and a couple others showed early interest. (Netflix declined to comment on the deal.)

A couple interesting storylines here: It’s a big flex for NFL Films as it ramps up a new partnership with David Ellison’s Skydance Sports. That price for a Jerry Jones show surprised me, given it’s about an owner, not a star player, and NFL football isn’t popular globally. But it’s 10-episodes, and Apple TV+ is paying $20 million or more for some player-and-musician-driven documentary films. The Jones project includes never-seen footage and interviews with Cowboys stars like Troy Aikman, Michael Irvin, and Emmitt Smith. And it has already drawn comparisons to The Last Dance—and that show’s heavy dose of 1990s nostalgia—since it focuses on the Cowboys’ rise as “America’s Team,” with their three Super Bowls in the early ’90s under Jones’ hands-on, star-powered ownership. It’s another sign of the booming market for premium sports docs, which is likely to grow hotter the longer the writers (and possibly actors) are on strike.