CMT Debuts ‘Smokey and the Bandit’ Documentary August 6

CMT debuts the Burt Reynolds-focused documentary The Bandit Saturday, Aug. 6. The film premiered earlier this year at SXSW, showcasing '70s Hollywood iconoclast Reynolds, his best friend and stunt-double Hal Needham, and the making of their 1977 theatrical smash Smokey and the Bandit, which Needham directed.  

The Bandit tells the story of the making of the film, while tracing the journeys of Reynolds and Needham from obscurity to stardom and, according to CMT, “highlighting one of the most extraordinary relationships in Hollywood history.”

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The documentary features new interviews with Reynolds, along with rare archive material. Needham died in 2013.

Jesse Moss produced and directed The Bandit, while Amanda McBaine produced for Mile End Films, and Jayson Dinsmore, Lewis Bogach and John Miller-Monzon did so on behalf of CMT. 

Michael Malone

Michael Malone, senior content producer at B+C/Multichannel News, covers network programming, including entertainment, news and sports on broadcast, cable and streaming; and local broadcast television. He hosts the podcasts Busted Pilot, about what’s new in television, and Series Business, a chat with the creator of a new program, and writes the column “The Watchman.” He joined B+C in 2005. His journalism has also appeared in The New York Times, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Playboy and New York magazine.