Amazon Prime’s Take Us Home: Leeds United co-producer and NEO Studios’ Head of Production Stevie Rowe has told LeedsUnited.News what it was like to work with Marcelo Bielsa behind-the-scenes during filming.
The documentary has covered an unseen look at Leeds United’s 2018-19 season which ended in play-off defeat to Derby County, and then two 45-minute episodes captured the elation of winning the Championship last term.
Bielsa is renowned for his desire to remain private and out of the press. The Argentine, though, can go into detail with mammoth press conferences, but has not given a sit-down interview since the turn of the millennium.
That changed during the documentary. Rowe and his colleagues managed to convince Bielsa to sit down during the second series, and Rowe recalled being frustrated by a lack of exposure until finally talking to the Leeds boss.
“He’s a mythical character,” Rowe told LeedsUnited.News. “He doesn’t speak to the press, he hadn’t done a sit-down interview in 24 years – for any media, anywhere, unless it was a press conference.
“The club were really helpful in forming a relationship with Bielsa. It got frustrating at times, as we didn’t get the access to Bielsa like All or Nothing got with Mourinho.
“He had the voice of a God-like figure. He did an interview, but it took some persuasion after months and months. We used snippets of those interviews to overlay the episodes, becoming a second narrator with Russell Crowe.
“He was aware, and prickly of the camera crews – but he warmed to them, and it got to the point where he didn’t realise they were there,” Rowe added.
On the pitch, Bielsa has already proved that his tactics and Leeds players can hack the step up to the Premier League from the Championship. Seven points from their first four games has caught the eye.
Indeed, Leeds almost beat Liverpool – eventually losing 4-3, while drawing with Manchester City 1-1. They are next in action on Monday night, when they play host to Wolverhampton Wanderers.
Photo and video credit: Amazon Prime Video Sport