3: The Dale Earnhardt Story (2004)

TV Movie  |   |  Biography, Drama, Sport  |  11 December 2004 (USA)
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Barry Pepper portrays legendary race car drive Dale Earnhardt, who died in 2001 during the last lap of the Daytona 500.



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Nominated for 1 Primetime Emmy. Another 2 nominations. See more awards »
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Credited cast:
Teresa Earnhardt
Pit Crowd
Martha Earnhardt
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Neil Bonnett
Jake Elder
Press Conference VIP
Kelly Earnhardt
Daisy (as Tricia Quattlebaum)
Kelly Earnhardt
Michael Flippo ...
Wayne Robertson
Daniel Freeze ...
Dale Pit Crew
Craig S. Harper ...
Kenny Schrader


Biographical story of Dale Earnhardt, Sr. starts with his young life and growing up with his father, Ralph, who raced for a living, but initially wanted more for his son. When Dale quits high school to start driving full time, his father aids him and shows a reluctant pride when he is initially successful. Armed with many of his father's philosophies, Dale pushed himself to be the best. His aggressive track mannerisms earned himself fans and detractors. Fellow racer Neil Bonnett was one of those long time friends and whose death deeply affected Dale. Darrell Waltrip clearly was a detractor and the two men's rivalry is clearly depicted. Off the track, Dale's determination to make it impacts two marriages. Third wife Theresa was closer to racing and met Dale when he had started his rise into the Winston Cup circuit. The story also looks at his relationship with his children, particularly son Kerry from his first marriage and whom he did not see again after age 5 until Kerry in his late ... Written by John Sacksteder <jsackste@bellsouth.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


One man, One sport. One nation.


Biography | Drama | Sport



Official Sites:



Release Date:

11 December 2004 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

3  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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Did You Know?


During an interview, after the Richmond race, Dale says he was "only trying to rattle his cage." This was not said at Richmond, but at Bristol, many years later, after crashing Terry Labonte. See more »


Neil Bonnett: You pissed off a lot of people out there today, Earnhardt. You almost ran me over a couple times.
Dale Earnhardt: So I suppose you're pissed off at me, too, then?
Neil Bonnett: What the hell do you care? We ain't out there to make friends.
See more »

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User Reviews

Surprisingly well done
12 December 2004 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Several years ago ESPN made a decision that they were going to expand their vision and focus to include original entertainment programming. This has led to a slew of made-for-TV films, dramatic mini-series, and specials about fictional or historical sports personalities and events. Although the acronym ESPN has always stood for Entertainment Sports Programming Network, ESPN never had the desire, budget, or ability to produce this type of original entertainment. Just like MTV has become less about music videos and more about reality TV, dramas, soap operas, and animated series, ESPN seems to be headed down the same wrong path. That's why when I saw the trailers for '3' the last couple weeks, I figured it would be poorly done and over-dramatized just like every other original project ESPN has touched. Surprisingly, that wasn't the case. Barry Pepper, who has been good in everything else I've seen him in, puts on a good performance this time too. I've never been a fan of auto sports, or Dale Earnhardt for that matter, but I was entertained by this movie every bit of the way.

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Message Boards

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Do you guys think that some people knew something was going to happen? revitupnascar
It really shocked me to see he died in such and innocent wreck!! josh_potatoes_jordan
Barry Pepper as Earnhardt? Duane-14
I auditioned JungleJayne7
4 all u who think we're rednecks!! iluvmaddentwins
question?? forswearitssight
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