PDA

View Full Version : Does Anyone remember Sonya Jeyaseelan/WTA documentary "She got game"?


Invisible Fan
Dec 23rd, 2012, 11:30 AM
It was a Canandian doco on the WTA made in about 2003. It followed the tour and Sonya in particular.
It featued young(er) current players like Serena Williams and Jelena Dokic as well as Kournikova, Capriati, Myskina and Hingis.

More below:

SHE GOT GAME - Synopsis
a film by Abbey Jack Neidik & Bobbi Jo Krals
produced by Abbey Jack Neidik, Bobbi Jo Krals, and Irene Angelico
Part road trip, part human drama, SHE GOT GAME takes an unprecedented behind-the-scenes look at the women's pro tennis tour, and explores what life is really like for these extraordinary young athletes. All sacrificed normal childhoods to train, and many were groomed by parents who dreamed of their little girls becoming tennis stars. But what is the price of a dream?

With over $50 million in annual prize money, tennis is the highest paid sport for women in the world. But while there are 1,000 young women currently competing on the WTA Tour, only a gifted few attain fame and fortune. Superstars like Americans Serena Williams and Jennifer Capriati, and Switzerland's Martina Hingis speak out about their road to success, which contrasts with the struggles of hundreds of lower-ranked players like Canadian Sonya Jeyaseelan.

Filmed in the United States, England, Germany, Russia, Canada and Australia, SHE GOT GAME follows the day-to-day lives of the pro tennis jet set who travel to over 30 countries a year during the marathon 11 month season. We meet up with tennis legends Billie Jean King and Martina Navratilova, speak with mothers Oracene Williams and Denise Capriati, and follow players like Barbara Schett, Anke Huber, Chanda Rubin, Iroda Tulyganova and Anna Kournikova.

Three years in the making, SHE GOT GAME weaves these exceptional stories together to reveal a universal human portrait of sacrifice, commitment, and perseverance in a cat-eat-cat world where winning is everything.

spiceboy
Dec 23rd, 2012, 11:50 AM
Definitely NOT 2003. Anke Huber cited in the article retired in 2001 and Jeyaseelan had a tumor removed behind her left eye in 2002 and virtually had her career ended there. She made a comeback but wasn't succesful.

I haven't watched the documentary though. It would be cool if someone uploaded it on youtube or something :)

Invisible Fan
Dec 23rd, 2012, 11:57 AM
In the doco they had a bit about Huber's pending retirement - with the German press only interested in asking the other players about it.
Sonya was coming back from a injury layoff during the program - at the end of the doco it showed that she beat Katerina Srebotnik in a Canandian tournament.

It was made when Capriati was winning slams - so 2001/2 probably :)

Fired
Dec 23rd, 2012, 12:15 PM
It was released in 2003: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0399644/

Gaby Gasparyan
Dec 23rd, 2012, 01:14 PM
I remember her. Very likeable....never saw the docu though

crazillo
Dec 23rd, 2012, 09:13 PM
I liked her. She practised with Maggie Maleeva after her retirement when Maggie was still playing on the tour as far as I remember. She also was her brightsmaid.

frenchie
Dec 23rd, 2012, 09:33 PM
it seems very interesting!
Where can we find it?

Kevin.
Dec 24th, 2012, 03:54 AM
I was trying to find it a couple days ago!

kiwifan
Dec 24th, 2012, 05:04 AM
I saw it. :)

She claimed that players called Anna K., "Anna Banana"...

...controversial stuff. :devil:

Vincey!
Dec 24th, 2012, 05:43 AM
Sonya had a pretty terrible story...her dad was another crazy tennis daddy and he was pushing her too much. She actually talked about that this year during the Rogers Cup. she said she had to totally cut her dad off of her life and she hasn't really reconnected with him ever since. In her interview this year she still sounded pretty upset at her dad. I'm glad she now seems pretty good with her life. She deserves it cuz she seems like a really nice girl.

spiceboy
Dec 24th, 2012, 08:34 AM
She was also one of the first players (if not the first) to play everything double-handed after the Seles effect :p

Lilowannabe
Dec 24th, 2012, 11:02 AM
Omg, remember watching this as a kid, was a casual tennis fan then. Have wanted to find it again since

Invisible Fan
Dec 24th, 2012, 12:26 PM
[QUOTE=Vincey!;22620217]Sonya had a pretty terrible story...her dad was another crazy tennis daddy and he was pushing her too much.[QUOTE]

In the documentary Sonya said he told her she was useless because she wasn't doing as well as Seles and Capriati. Their was certainly at least verbal abuse.

Elwin.
Dec 24th, 2012, 01:20 PM
I remember watching this. Really time a long ago. I was very young, but impressed by the docu.
I think she also went on a pretty bad losing streak in the documentary. Ending her losing streak by beating Srebotnik i think

Gaby Gasparyan
Dec 24th, 2012, 01:33 PM
I found this......

http://adobeproductions.com/catalogue/133-she-got-game

Vincey!
Dec 24th, 2012, 01:55 PM
[QUOTE=Vincey!;22620217]Sonya had a pretty terrible story...her dad was another crazy tennis daddy and he was pushing her too much.[QUOTE]

In the documentary Sonya said he told her she was useless because she wasn't doing as well as Seles and Capriati. Their was certainly at least verbal abuse.
I THINK (I'm not sure) but I think she said in her interview that if she was losing a match her dad was making her sleep on the floor that night. So not only verbal abuse.

frenchie
Dec 24th, 2012, 02:03 PM
It looks so interesting!

but 69$!!

Gaby Gasparyan
Dec 24th, 2012, 02:19 PM
It looks so interesting!

but 69$!!

Mayb we could all chip in together and buy a copy? I'll post off for it.... when you all send me the cash. :)

Adidas Dude
Dec 28th, 2012, 04:40 PM
I recorded "She Got Game" when they aired it on TV. It was thought-provoking but didn't really get too deep, despite Sonya's story. They mentioned all the facts and even interviewed Rene Simpson, who said that all the top Canadian girls at the time hated Sonya, but mainly, she admitted, largely because of what her father was predicting for Sonya - "Wimbledon champion by 18!"

The documentary also discussed Anna Kournikova's legacy and how the pressure on her was enormous because of her portfolio and profile. She (and Martina Hingis) couldn't party or celebrate like most young people their age. They can't just go out and get hammered. The most they could do was sip a glass of champagne and then go to bed in preparation for their next tournament. They showed a funny clip of the Kremlin Cup tournament bringing out a birthday cake for Martina Hingis. She jokingly pretended to throw the cake in Anna's face, and then Anna jokingly threatened to do it back to her. There was largely a lot of sympathy for the young women like them on tour, but it's harder if they are the top players and more visible to the public eye.

Notably, the birthday cake incident happened just weeks before the Chilean vase-throwing incident. Anna was also portrayed as a bit of a ditz - or at least "uncertain." She was booking a practice court and couldn't decide what time she wanted. She kept changing her mind that it was getting ridiculous. Anastasia Myskina and Daja Bedanova were a couple of the players in the player office who were watching as Anna changed her booking time from midday to 1pm to 4pm to 5pm, back to 3pm, and so forth.

Martina Hingis later remarked how she disliked the person who invented the autograph - "I hate them!" It was a joke. She laughed. Cut to the next scene and she's stepping out of a limo and happily signing dozens of autographs for fans waiting for her to appear.

Sonya's "Anna Banana" comment came just as she was about to try on some new Nike shoes from her sponsors. Sonya was sitting on a couch and looking at a Sports Illustrated cover with Anna on the front. She recalls how she has known Anna since they were all little kids hitting together at Bolletieri's Academy. Sonya mused about the magazine cover: "She was a little princess back then and now she's a real one." Sonya then went on to try on some new Nike shoes and did some weird dance, saying to the camera: "Don't you just love how I test the shoes!?"

At the WTA Championships in Munich, the top 16 players were being interviewed by the media after a photo shoot. Serena Williams at first refused to participate but was coaxed back into the room after being reminded that it was one of her commitments to the tournament. Amelie Mauresmo was asked if she knew the name of Steffi Graf and Andre Agassi's baby. She didn't. When the interviewer informed her that it was "Jaden Gil," he then asked Amelie what she thought about it. Amelie just gave him a confused but acknowledging look and said, "That, um, sounds...good," or something to that effect. Jennifer Capriati was less subtle. Her journalist asked her about Anke Huber and what Jennifer thought about Anke's impending retirement. Jennifer said: "She's, um, a nice girl and I wish her all the best..." Jenny then drifts off and looks at the PR woman and says: "Are we here to talk about me and my tennis, or... what!?" LOL. Meow.

They also talked to Barbara Schett, who revealed that she had to decide between school and tennis. She comments that if she had been a boy, she would never have been allowed to stop going to school. But because she was (in her words) "too stupid," she was allowed to quit school by her parents. This interview segued into a commentary with Bud Collins and Mary Carillo about how most of the women on tour had never finished high school. Carillo used Lindsay Davenport as an example of one player who HAD finished high school, saying that she once walked into the locker room at a tournament holding up her high school diploma, announcing: "Look what I've got! I bet none of you have ever seen one of these before!" LOL. Bitch.

The impact of the Williams sisters was also a small part of the documentary - two, young black women from the same family who both became Grand Slam champions. (At the time, neither had been ranked No. 1 yet.) Their story has been discussed to death, so I won't go into the details. It was mainly the superficial details. Notably, they never interviewed Venus or Serena for the documentary.

*Jool*
Dec 28th, 2012, 05:31 PM
I never saw that documentary but for some reason I always loved Sonya and followed her career pretty closely :awww:

WhatTheDeuce
Dec 28th, 2012, 05:55 PM
I always liked Sonya too. I wanna see this!

crazillo
Dec 28th, 2012, 06:20 PM
I uploaded another documentary done by the BBC series recently. I posted it in Blast of the Past but maybe this is the right time to let more people take notice of it. It's about the end of the 2001 and beginning of 2002 WTA tour season.

http://www.tennisforum.com/showthread.php?t=468341

fufuqifuqishahah
Dec 28th, 2012, 06:29 PM
there are clips on youtube... :P

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FEGCCKKAGUM

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VI1YfIHhHig

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2CvzISpYe3U

and Mary Carillo is being nice to the Williams Sisters

spiceboy
Dec 28th, 2012, 06:37 PM
I recorded "She Got Game" when they aired it on TV. It was thought-provoking but didn't really get too deep, despite Sonya's story. They mentioned all the facts and even interviewed Rene Simpson, who said that all the top Canadian girls at the time hated Sonya, but mainly, she admitted, largely because of what her father was predicting for Sonya - "Wimbledon champion by 18!"

The documentary also discussed Anna Kournikova's legacy and how the pressure on her was enormous because of her portfolio and profile. She (and Martina Hingis) couldn't party or celebrate like most young people their age. They can't just go out and get hammered. The most they could do was sip a glass of champagne and then go to bed in preparation for their next tournament. They showed a funny clip of the Kremlin Cup tournament bringing out a birthday cake for Martina Hingis. She jokingly pretended to throw the cake in Anna's face, and then Anna jokingly threatened to do it back to her. There was largely a lot of sympathy for the young women like them on tour, but it's harder if they are the top players and more visible to the public eye.

Notably, the birthday cake incident happened just weeks before the Chilean vase-throwing incident. Anna was also portrayed as a bit of a ditz - or at least "uncertain." She was booking a practice court and couldn't decide what time she wanted. She kept changing her mind that it was getting ridiculous. Anastasia Myskina and Daja Bedanova were a couple of the players in the player office who were watching as Anna changed her booking time from midday to 1pm to 4pm to 5pm, back to 3pm, and so forth.

Martina Hingis later remarked how she disliked the person who invented the autograph - "I hate them!" It was a joke. She laughed. Cut to the next scene and she's stepping out of a limo and happily signing dozens of autographs for fans waiting for her to appear.

Sonya's "Anna Banana" comment came just as she was about to try on some new Nike shoes from her sponsors. Sonya was sitting on a couch and looking at a Sports Illustrated cover with Anna on the front. She recalls how she has known Anna since they were all little kids hitting together at Bolletieri's Academy. Sonya mused about the magazine cover: "She was a little princess back then and now she's a real one." Sonya then went on to try on some new Nike shoes and did some weird dance, saying to the camera: "Don't you just love how I test the shoes!?"

At the WTA Championships in Munich, the top 16 players were being interviewed by the media after a photo shoot. Serena Williams at first refused to participate but was coaxed back into the room after being reminded that it was one of her commitments to the tournament. Amelie Mauresmo was asked if she knew the name of Steffi Graf and Andre Agassi's baby. She didn't. When the interviewer informed her that it was "Jaden Gil," he then asked Amelie what she thought about it. Amelie just gave him a confused but acknowledging look and said, "That, um, sounds...good," or something to that effect. Jennifer Capriati was less subtle. Her journalist asked her about Anke Huber and what Jennifer thought about Anke's impending retirement. Jennifer said: "She's, um, a nice girl and I wish her all the best..." Jenny then drifts off and looks at the PR woman and says: "Are we here to talk about me and my tennis, or... what!?" LOL. Meow.

They also talked to Barbara Schett, who revealed that she had to decide between school and tennis. She comments that if she had been a boy, she would never have been allowed to stop going to school. But because she was (in her words) "too stupid," she was allowed to quit school by her parents. This interview segued into a commentary with Bud Collins and Mary Carillo about how most of the women on tour had never finished high school. Carillo used Lindsay Davenport as an example of one player who HAD finished high school, saying that she once walked into the locker room at a tournament holding up her high school diploma, announcing: "Look what I've got! I bet none of you have ever seen one of these before!" LOL. Bitch.

The impact of the Williams sisters was also a small part of the documentary - two, young black women from the same family who both became Grand Slam champions. (At the time, neither had been ranked No. 1 yet.) Their story has been discussed to death, so I won't go into the details. It was mainly the superficial details. Notably, they never interviewed Venus or Serena for the documentary.

Great report. Thanks! :D

fufuqifuqishahah
Dec 29th, 2012, 01:41 AM
they interviewed Oracene

powerpuff27
Dec 29th, 2012, 04:29 AM
The only time I ever saw her play was when she beat Venus in some clay tournament in 99 I think it was. She was impressive that day. I never heard from her again after that though.

arabbeast13
Oct 10th, 2013, 02:47 PM
good find

Sammo
Oct 10th, 2013, 03:45 PM
Carillo used Lindsay Davenport as an example of one player who HAD finished high school, saying that she once walked into the locker room at a tournament holding up her high school diploma, announcing: "Look what I've got! I bet none of you have ever seen one of these before!" LOL. Bitch.



I refused to believe it until now but it seems like Lindsay was really an idiot when she was young.

montrealfilmmake
Oct 17th, 2013, 02:20 PM
Hi everyone,

I co-directed the feature documentary SHE GOT GAME: Behind-the-Scenes of the Women's Tennis Tour. Sonya is doing great btw - she is coaching the junior girls for Tennis Canada and was recently inducted into the Tennis Hall of Fame. Otherwise, you can contact courrier@adobeproductions.com if you'd like more information about purchasing a DVD. We'd love to get the film on Tennis Channel in the USA (It aired on Life Network and Radio Canada in Canada), so please write or call them to encourage them to air the film (thanks!). Otherwise, you can see some clips from the film on YouTube at:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2CvzISpYe3U
SHE GOT GAME clip -- Serena/Mary Carillo

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FEGCCKKAGUM
SHE GOT GAME - Sonya Jeyaseelan/Bud Collins

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VI1YfIHhHig
SHE GOT GAME: Martina H. 21st bday in Moscow

Thanks for your interest!!

Bobbi Jo Hart (Krals)

*Jool*
Oct 17th, 2013, 04:26 PM
thanks for the clips! :hatoff:
Bud Collins said something interesting here , even on this forum people don't always realize what's life on tour, how hard it can be, and often lack of respect for those girls ranked 50-..... who work as hard as those who are on top

that's why I liked the idea of following Sonya (who I appeared to like a lot! ) in this documentary I unfortunately never got the chance to see ;)

Invisible Fan
Oct 18th, 2013, 07:28 AM
Would the DVD be available worldwide - or just North America?