Rakuten TV is set to release "Karate-do: The Path of Sandra Sanchez," a compelling documentary that unveils the inspirational journey of the karate Olympic champion. This captivating film will be accessible on the platform starting from September 21st in 42 countries. For those eager to witness the story firsthand, an exclusive premiere will be held at the Palacio de la Prensa in Madrid on September 19th. Additionally, Spanish audiences will have the opportunity to watch the documentary in select cinemas.
The documentary chronicles Sandra Sanchez's remarkable journey, illuminating her triumph over numerous obstacles to achieve her current status as an extraordinary sportswoman. Her path was not without challenges; after a demanding journey to join the national team, she faced the heartbreaking decision to leave the prestigious High-Performance Centre to be closer to her mother, who was battling cancer. During this trying period, fear and self-doubt took hold, pushing her to her lowest point. In those difficult moments, Sandra made a life-altering choice to leave behind everything in Madrid and embark on a new chapter in Australia.
Sandra's return to her homeland rekindled her passion for karate and ignited her unwavering determination to become the Spanish Karate champion. With relentless persistence, she found a top-notch coach in Jesús del Moral, who eventually became her husband. Victories started to accumulate, further fueling her indomitable spirit. Their shared love for karate cemented their bond and propelled them toward greatness.
Throughout the documentary, viewers will be transported to various locations that hold significance in Sandra's career, from her hometown of Talavera de la Reina, where she first embraced karate, to Dubai, where she secured her most recent world championship. The film also delves into the valuable lessons she gained from her time in Japan, the birthplace of karate. Naturally, a pivotal moment in the documentary is the behind-the-scenes account of her Olympic triumph at Tokyo 2020.
The documentary places significant emphasis on testimonials and interviews. Sandra herself candidly shares her journey in her own words, shedding light on how she became a revered figure in Spanish sports. Interviews with her closest friends and family, including:
Jesús del Moral – Her coach and husband, offering insights into Sandra's career as both a trainer and a life partner, adding an emotional dimension to their relationship.
Javier Pineño – Her Karate Master since age 6, who instilled in her a deep love for karate, its values, and the connection between tradition and sport.
Serafin and Isabel - Sandra's parents, who provide their perspective on their daughter's journey, highlighting Isabel's pivotal role during Sandra's time at the Centro de Alto Rendimiento academy.
Paco Sánchez – Sandra's brother, who introduced her to karate and shared his passion for the art with her.
Shimizu – Her greatest rival and friend, showcasing the camaraderie and friendly competition between the two athletes.
Rika Usami – Sandra's inspiration, a fellow karateka who shares a close relationship with Sandra.
Okamura Master – Rika Usami's teacher and a prominent figure in the world of karate, whose guidance was instrumental in Sandra's success.
Ivan Leal – A two-time world champion, who served as a constant reference during Sandra's youth and her journey to victory.
Eleonora Giovio and Almudena Rivera – Two female Spanish sports journalists who provide context to Sandra's story, her sporting achievements, and her impact on the world of sport and karate.
Directed by José Manuel Alfaro Lorenzo and produced by Doble Once Filmmakers (11:11) in collaboration with OÉOÉ Marketing, this documentary promises an inspiring and intimate look into Sandra Sanchez's extraordinary life and career.
Karate-do: The Path of Sandra Sanchez will be available on Rakuten TV from 21 September 2023. This documentary will be exclusive to Rakuten TV and available in 42 European countries, as part of the Rakuten Originals collection.