If you care about the biz side of the MLS, and you didn’t experience the NASL, you need to watch Once in a Lifetime: The Extraordinary Story of the New York Cosmos. This 2006 documentary reveals the marketing manipulations and public excitement behind the 1970s New York Cosmos.
Nesuhi Ertegün and his brother Ahmet Ertegün convinced Warner Communications CEO Steve Ross to invest heavily in the Cosmos and bring in all the stars (deja vu today’s NY Red Bulls and LA Galaxy). The big names on the Cosmos were like rock stars in New York. Unfortunately for NASL, Ross pulled the plug on Cosmos after the USA was unable to host the 1986 World Cup.
One of the funniest parts is Shep Messing talking about his nude centerfold, “gaining exposure” for the Cosmos. It was also interesting to learn that at one point the staff had the grass painted green in order to get Pele to play on it.
It seems like someone has changed the title of this film. I could have sworn it did not have the word “Extraordinary” in it back in 2011…
I streamed the movie, but according to a post on Amazon, the extras on the DVD are not compelling.
7 Soccer Movie Mom Rating = 7