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Edward "Ed" Sabol (born September 11, 1916) is an Americanmarker filmmaker and the founder (with his son Steve Sabol, among others) of NFL Films. He is the father of radical fashion journalist and humorist of the sixties, seventies and eighties, Blair Sabol.


Early life, education, and career

Sabol was born in Atlantic City, New Jerseymarker and raised in Blairstown, New Jerseymarker. While attending Blair Academymarker, he excelled in several sports, and set a World Interscholastic Swimming record in the 100-yard freestyle race. He continued his noted swimming career at The Ohio State Universitymarker. He was selected for the 1936 Olympic team, he refused to participate due to the games connections to Nazi Germanymarker. He had some success in the theater as an actor, appearing on Broadwaymarker for the production of Where Do We Go from Here. He served in World War II, and upon returning to civilian life, worked as a clothing salesman out of his father's factory.

NFL Films

He founded Blair Motion Pictures in 1962. Its first major contract was to film the 1962 NFL Championship Game between the New York Giants and the Green Bay Packers at Yankee Stadiummarker in New York. In 1964, Blair Motion Pictures became NFL Films, with an exclusive deal to preserve NFL games on film. It has been said by his son Steve Sabol, of NFL Films, "The only other human endeavor more thoroughly captured on 16-mm film than the National Football League is World War II." In 1995, he officially retired from NFL Films in his role as President and Chairman. In 1996, he was elected to the International Jewish Sports Hall of Fame.

Awards and honors

  • 1935 World Interscholastic Record holder, 100-yard freestyle swimming
  • 1937 Big Ten championship, 400-yard freestyle relay swimming
  • 1937 National AAU championship, 400-yard freestyle relay swimming
  • 91 Emmy Awards (to NFL Films)
  • 1987 Order of the Leather Helmet (presented by the NFL Alumni Association)
  • 1987 Bert Bell Memorial Award (presented by the NFL)
  • 1991 Pete Rozelle Award (presented by the NFL)
  • 1996 International Jewish Sports Hall of Fame
  • 2003 Lifetime Achievement Emmy
  • 2004 John Grierson International Gold Medal


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