To Russia With Love: LGBT Rights Examined Through The Lens of Athletes’ Experience!

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To Russia With Love is documentary that explores LGBT rights through the lives and experiences of gay athletes – and these are not just any old athletes. We’re talking Olympic medalists – Billie Jean King, Mark Tewksbury, Greg Louganis, Charline Labonté (above) – the best of the best. Also included are notable figures in and out side of the sports community – figures like Calgary Flames President of Hockey Operations and USA Hockey personnel director Brian Burke, Russian Open Games’ Konstantin Yablotsky and Elvina Yuvakaeva, David Remnick, editor-in-chief-of The New Yorker, actor/activist Stephen Fry and the Brooklyn Nets’ Jason Collins.

To Russia With Love was shot in cities around the world,  from Sochi, New York City, Calgary, Toronto, St. Petersburg and Moscow and our guide on this journey will be the colorful athlete and commentator, Johnny Weir. It premieres on EPIX on Wednesday, October 22nd. For more details, check out the press release after the jump.

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FEATURING JOHNNY WEIR, BILLIE JEAN KING, GREG LOUGANIS, JASON COLLINS, OLYMPIC GOLD MEDALIST MARK TEWKSBURY AND OLYMPIANS BELLE BROCKHOFF, ANASTASIA BUCSIS, CHARLINE LABONTE & BLAKE SKJELLERUP

EPIX ORIGINAL DOCUMENTARY TO RUSSIA WITH LOVE PREMIERES OCTOBER 22 AT 8PM ET

New York, NY, JULY 8, 2014 – Premium entertainment network EPIX announced today that To Russia With Love, an EPIX Original Documentary about two generations of Olympic LGBT athletes, will make its World Premiere Wednesday, October 22 at 8PM ETTo Russia with Love examines human rights through the lens of LGBT athletes, with iconoclastic athlete and commentator Johnny Weir serving as the viewers’ guide into this world.  The documentary examines the experiences of Olympic legends Billie Jean King and Greg Louganis as well as the next generation of LGBT athletes who participated in the 2014 Olympic Games in Sochi, Russia.  Shooting worldwide in locations as diverse as Sochi, New York City, Calgary, Toronto, St. Petersburg and Moscow, the film follows these athletes from the ice to the slopes as they bear the brunt of constant media questioning about Russia’s anti-gay laws.

In addition to Olympic sports legends, 2014 Olympians and Olympic hopefuls included in the film are snowboarders Belle Brockhoff and Simona Meiler, speed skaters Anastasia Bucsis and Blake Skjellerup, four-time gold medal winning hockey player Charline Labonté, as well as notable sports personalities such as Calgary Flames President of Hockey Operations and USA Hockey personnel director Brian Burke, Olympic gold medalist swimmer Mark Tewksbury and Russian Open Games’ Konstantin Yablotskiy and Elvina Yuvakaeva. To Russia With Love also features interviews and commentary from David Remnick, editor-in-chief of The New Yorker, Golden Globe-nominated actor and activist Stephen Fry and the Brooklyn Nets’ Jason Collins.

“As gay athletes’ fight for equality continues to gain momentum, EPIX is proud to provide a platform for this important global conversation,” said EPIX President and CEO Mark Greenberg.

Join the conversation about #ToRussiaWithLove on Twitter http://Twitter.com/EpixHD, on Facebook  http://Facebook.com/EPIX and on the EPIX webpage http://www.epix.com/to-russia-with-love

To Russia With Love is an EPIX Original Documentary, produced by Sundance Productions. Noam Gonick is the director; Howard Gertler (Oscar nominee, How to Survive a Plague) and Elle Flanders are the producers and Jennifer P. Honn is the editor.  Laura Michalchyshyn and Johnny Weir are executive producers and Laina Cohn is co-producer.  Ross Bernard and Jill Burkhart are executive producers for EPIX.

About Sundance Productions

Founded in 2012 by Robert Redford and Laura Michalchyshyn, Sundance Productions develops and produces innovative, compelling fiction and non fiction content for linear and digital platforms in the U.S, and around the world.  Recent productions include CNN series Chicagoland (BCTV) and Death Row Stories (Alex Gibney/Jigsaw Productions).  The company is currently in production on Stephen David Entertainment’s non scripted series The West (Discovery Channel/DRG).  Sundance Productions received an Emmy nomination, CINE Gold and Realscreen Award for the 2013 feature documentary All the President’s Men Revisited (Discovery Channel).  Their feature documentary The March received a BAFTA nomination for Specialist Factual (Smoking Dog Films/PBS, BBC France 3).  This fall 2014 they will premiere Cathedrals of Culture (6 anthology films Wim Wenders/Neue Road Movies/RadicalMedia.

About EPIX

EPIX is a premium movie and original programming entertainment service delivering the latest movie releases, classic film franchises, original documentaries, comedy and music events on TV, on demand, online and on devices.   Launched in October 2009, EPIX has pioneered the development and proliferation of “TV Everywhere.”  It was the first premium network to provide multi-platform access to its content online at EPIX.com and was the first premium network to launch on Xbox, PlayStation®, Android tablets and phones, Windows 8.1 and Roku® players.  EPIX is available to authenticated subscribers on hundreds of devices including Apple® iPads® and iPhones® and is the only premium service providing all its programming  on all platforms, delivering more movies than any other premium network, with thousands of titles available for streaming.

EPIX is a joint venture between Viacom Inc. (NASDAQ: VIA and VIA.B), its Paramount Pictures unit, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc. (MGM) and Lionsgate (NYSE: LGF).  Through relationships with cable, satellite and telco partners, EPIX is available to over 45 million homes nationwide.  For more information about EPIX, go to www.EPIX.com. Follow EPIX on Twitter @EpixHD (http://www.twitter.com/EpixHD) and on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/EPIX), YouTube (http://youtube.com/EPIX), Instagram (http://instagram.com/EPIX), Google+ (http://plus.google.com/+EPIX ) and Pinterest (http://pinterest.com/EPIX).