New Disney+ doc series to give fans all-access pass to AFLW

The highs, the lows, the tears and the triumphs -- AFLW fans are set to get an all-access pass into the inner sanctum of four clubs with a new Disney+ docu-series set to air in coming months.

Following the Adelaide Crows as they hoisted the AFLW trophy for a third time, as well as the GWS Giants, Collingwood and Western Bulldogs, the new series will showcase the many stories of the players, support staff and coaches as they played out the fifth AFLW season in early 2022.

"Disney+ are going to give us a time capsule of our third premiership win and we'll have that forever," Adelaide Crows midfielder Ebony Marinoff told ESPN at the announcement of the new series.

"It's just an incredible feeling to be able to hold up the cup for the third time, but then obviously to have Disney+ follow us for the whole journey from the start of the season to the end and to be able to hold up the cup and have them have the access that they did it's going to be an amazing documentary."

GWS Giants captain Alicia Eva said the series will give viewers the chance to see the work players put into an AFLW season.

"It's fantastic to have the AFLW journey documented, and I think it'll just create the opportunity for many people to have a look at what we do, and what we put into it," Eva said. "I'm looking forward to seeing what plays out.

"It's an all-access pass so they had access to all the dramas of the season, the highs and lows and many of the challenges. At times it's difficult when you're running around and you realize you got a mic on and you're about to give someone a spray or you do give someone a spray and then you think, oh God, did I just say that? But that's part and parcel of it. That's what we want the outside world to see, see what we put into it, the passion that the players put into it and the support staff and coaches.

"So really excited to see what the final product is and to have a look at some of what the other teams get up to."

One of the highlights of the series according to Eva and Marinoff will be witnessing the passion and tireless work the part-time players put into the sport alongside their jobs outside the footy field, as well as the diverse backgrounds of players across the competition.

"I think just the diversity of the competition [will get fans excited]," Marinoff said. "Obviously we're not full-time athletes and there's many women who have other jobs. There's doctors and nurses, there's police officers and fire women, there's everything, so I think for the outside to see how these women go about it on a day-to-day basis as well as trying to be the most professional athlete they can it's going to be very inspiring."

For Eva, showcasing just how hard working and playing is exactly what she wants the fans to see as they push towards full professionalism in the years to come.

"Yeah it can become difficult [being a part-time athlete]. We don't shy away from that, and I certainly don't want people to think that it's a walk in the park and that's why we are pushing for full-time professionalism because of the hours that we do put in on top of business hours," Eva said.

"I think the part-time nature of AFLW is often spoken about and I think what this documentary will really showcase is the stories that so many of our players bring, whether it be in what they do for work outside of the space, their family background, their cultural background and then what the club environment really means to each player individually.

"We keep going back to the passion and the commitment and the willingness of players to just give their all over the course of the season. So I really hope that comes to the fore, but we've got so many amazing stories within the AFLW cohort and I hope many of them will be told in this documentary."

With an announcement on season dates expected within the next 24-36 hours, players are already preparing for an August start with the expanded competition welcoming the Sydney Swans, Port Adelaide, Hawthorn and Essendon.

Already cross-town rivals Port have made moves to lure the Crows' biggest names, signing star midfielder Erin Phillips after she lifted the AFLW trophy for a third time with the Adelaide side, but Marinoff believes her team still has the talent to make it back-to-back titles.

"I'm excited to be a Crow for the first showdown, we're all looking forward to what that rivalry will be for the women," Marinoff said.

"I think losing Erin Phillips is a big loss because she's just such a powerhouse of the competition and there's only one Erin Phillips, there's only ever going to be one Erin Phillips and she's been an amazing contributor for our club, but we've got immense belief within the group that it doesn't matter who's out there on game day.

"We've got young girls stepping up, there's the evolution of Chelsea Biddell down back, and then our young guns in Tia Charlton and Rachelle Martin coming through the midfield and then watch out for Danielle Ponter to thrive without Erin Phillips, just being able to have a bit more of ownership within the forward line, 'cause you know Erin won't be there. So I can't wait to watch Danielle Ponter just thrive and own that forward line as well.

"We've got names and it's not about having the names, it's how we make them become the best players they can be and contribute to their game day role, which we feel like we've done this year and we'll just continue to do that.

"It's not far away, but I hope and I believe that we have the talent and the game plan and the system and the program to go back-to- back, but there's a lot of work to be done and inside the four walls we don't shy away or hide away from the fact that we're going into every season wanting to win a premiership so we'll be wanting to go back-to-back, but I don't think we'll be framing it as going back-to-back, instead it's just about winning a premiership and so that's kind of our philosophy of preseason."

With a season format yet to be decided, many players have been pushing for a full 17-round season which would see more than 30 games played in a year, but Marinoff says a full round season isn't feasible while they remain part-time athletes.

"I'm not hoping for a full round season, I think I played 12 or 13 games this year and over the past couple of years it's been an eight- or nine-game season and then with finals -- I don't think it would be fair for the athletes to play over 30 games in a year, for part-time athletes it's not gonna happen.

"I'm certainly planning and I know my teammates are planning to play in August, so we'll see how that pans out."