Tonight and Wednesday, PBS debuts Ken Burns’ The Tenth Inning, his four-hour sequel to Baseball. TIME’s Sean Gregory, who unlike me actually knows something about the sport, interviewed Burns and partner Lynn Novick about the doc:
TIME: The film deals with controversial figures like Barry Bonds and Mark McGwire, yet we don’t hear from many of them in the interviews. Do you feel that negatively affects the film?
Burns: You know, it’s not O.K. and it’s O.K. I would have liked to have an interview with Abe Lincoln. I really think it was a loss for the Civil War film. But what would Barry Bonds have given you, except for what his lawyers told him to say? Or the kind of clichés that Nuke LaLoosh [the naive pitcher played by Tim Robbins in Bull Durham] said: “I would like to thank God for all the talents I have. I want to play within myself.” What the hell does playing within oneself mean?