Soul on Ice
NBC is developing a two-hour movie that will chronicle the rise of ice skating star Tai Babilonia and her descent into drugs, alcohol and attempted suicide. In 1980, Babilonia and partner Randy Gardner were strong bets to take the gold medal at the Lake Placid Olympics when an injury to Gardner ended the pair’s dream. Babilonia began a slide into chemical dependency and depression that ended with her recovery last year.
The TV movie, likely to air during the 1990-91 season, will spend the first hour focusing on her start in skating, her pairing with Gardner and the crushing blow at the Olympics, an NBC rep told us. Hour two will concentrate on her decline, with an upbeat ending as the skater returns to the ice.
Although there’s been no casting, Tai and Randy will not play themselves, said a staffer at Spectacor Films, which is producing. But the pair will perform their own skating sequences.