Kick like Tayla: Amazon to produce Harris documentary

Tayla Harris will be the subject of a documentary exploring the way she manages her dual-sport career and handles online trolls as part of streaming giant Amazon’s expansion into the Australian market.

Carlton forward Harris is being followed by a camera crew during this year’s AFLW season, with Amazon filming footage for Kick Like Tayla, which is set to be released later this year. It will be the seventh Australian original series produced by Amazon Prime Video.

Tayla Harris

Already one of the AFLW’s most prominent players, Harris’ profile was turbocharged in 2019 when a photograph of her at full-stretch kicking – taken by Michael Willson – led to her being subjected to vile and sexist trolling.

She is also a boxer, boasting an unbeaten record in the professional ranks.

“I’m thrilled to be a part of this new Amazon Prime Video documentary where I can show what is a usually very private side to myself. You will see what makes me tick, how I go about game day, cutting weight for fights and plenty more,” Harris said.

The film is a continuation of Amazon’s push into Australian sport, with the series Making Their Mark due to be released next month. That series followed AFL identities Nic Naitanui, Stuart Dew, Stephen Coniglio, Eddie Betts, Rory Sloane, Damien Hardwick, Brendon Gale and Peggy O’Neal through the tumultuous and COVID-19-riddled 2020 season.

That followed The Test, an eight-part series documenting the Australian cricket team’s rebuild from the ball-tampering scandal of 2018. Amazon also recently procured live streaming rights to this year’s Australian swimming championships.

Tyler Bern, head of content at Prime Video Australia, described Harris as an inspiration.

“We are pleased to be adding another Australian Amazon Original sports documentary to our growing lineup for Prime members in Australia and around the world,” Bern said.

“Sport is so intrinsic to the Australian way of life, and Tayla Harris is one of the world’s most exciting and inspirational athletes of our generation. Tayla’s grit and unflinching determination make her an inspiration to many, and the documentary will provide a unique perspective on what drives her success.”

The AFL is yet to enter into an exclusive broadcast rights deal with a streaming company, but last week announced an expanded deal with Kayo, owned by News Corp, which has developed a substantial portfolio of sports rights. Stan, owned by Nine – the publisher of this masthead – have meanwhile obtained the rights for Australian rugby.

Optus Sport has been the exclusive Australian rights holder of the English Premier League since 2016.

The current AFL broadcast rights deal expires at the end of 2024.

“We are thrilled to be extending our partnership with Amazon Prime Video and Screentime, which is centred around sharing the unique stories from within the AFL community told by our incredible talent. Kick Like Tayla provides both footy fans and supporters of women in sport with the ability to get up close and personal with one of the most recognisable women in our game,” said AFL general manager of digital, Sarah Wyse.

“Kick Like Tayla is a world-class documentary focused on one of the most-exciting athletes in sport today. Every time the ball goes in her direction you sit up to see what happens next,” added Andrew Garrick, the documentary’s executive director.

“This new documentary will enable audiences to connect with Tayla, who is not only a sporting legend with a long career ahead of her, but who is also an unapologetic pioneer and a fierce fighter for women’s rights. We are delighted to be working alongside Amazon Prime Video and the AFL to share this story of strength in the face of adversity, and delve into the world and mind of this immense talent.”

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