Directed by the Austin-based Jacob Hamilton, the documentary Jump Shot seeks to bring to attention the on- and off-the-court accomplishments of the late Kenny Sailors, an integral member of the University of Wyoming’s 1943 NCAA men’s basketball championship team and a player during the early years of the NBA. As detailed in Jump Shot, Sailors is considered by many within the sport as introducing the jump shot to the game of basketball, first at Laramie High School in Wyoming and then at the college and pro levels. But outside of Wyoming, Sailors is a forgotten pioneer of the game, one who remains conspicuously absence from the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. The documentary details how Sailors added the jump shot to his game as a teenager and perfected his technique throughout his career, and also examines how Sailors committed himself to advancing youth basketball—especially for girls’ participation in the sport—after he retired to Alaska in the 1950s after 7 seasons with 7 teams in the NBA. Jump Shot features interviews with Kenny Sailors, who died in 2016 at age 95, as well as former college basketball coach Bob Knight, ESPN analyst Jay Bilas, and NBA players Dirk Nowitzki. Kevin Durant, and Steph Curry, who serves as one of the documentary’s executive producers. Jump Shot, which premiered locally this year’s SXSW Film Festival, will screen 1:15 p.m. Saturday, April 27 during the Hill Country Film Festival at the Fritztown Cinema in Fredericksburg. Jacob Hamilton makes his documentary feature debut with Jump Shot.
Aired: April 18, 2019