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August 29, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

PBS said on Wednesday that its controversial documentary League of Denial will air during a single two-hour block from 9:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. on October 8 instead of being split into two one-hour features on Oct. 8 and 15. (October 8 also marks the season debut of NBC’s Sunday Night Football, featuring the New York Giants versus the Dallas Cowboys.) “The move was made to create a stronger, two-hour footprint for the program, which will be augmented by a robust marketing plan,” said Frontline deputy executive producer Raney Aronson-Rath. That marketing plan, of course, will not include further exposure on ESPN, which dropped its collaboration with PBS on the film, complaining about lack of editorial control. It particularly objected to a closing comment voiced by neuropathologist Ann McKee, who says she wonders whether “every single football player doesn’t have” some degree of permanent brain injury. In announcing ESPN’s decision to drop its association with the documentary, ESPN President John Skipper said that he regarded McKee’s comment as “over the top.” He also objected to the trailer’s tagline: “Get ready to change the way you see the game.” Frontline has not altered the trailer.