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ESPN, The Undefeated Celebrate Jackie Robinson Day With Debut Of Black History Always Brand Film

". . . this film celebrates the truth that Black history and achievement is happening all around us, all the time."

Jackie Robinson Day celebrates a prominent figure in Black History who paved the way for so many that came after him and for the Black history that is written each day.

Today, coinciding with Jackie Robinson Day, The Undefeated and ESPN debuted a brand film that articulates and celebrates the idea of Black History Always, an initiative ESPN announced in January to highlight Black stories well beyond Black History Month in February. The spot, seen above, will run across The Walt Disney Company platforms.

“Black History Always is an initiative to explore and recommit to the idea of Black stories, not just for the shortest month of the year but something we champion and produce throughout the year,” said Raina Kelley, deputy editor of The Undefeated. “ESPN has always created great content for Black History Month, telling stories and elevating voices that we’re proud of, but when we launched The Undefeated five years ago, this idea of elevating it across all ESPN platforms for more than the traditional 28 days started to grow.”

“In developing the creative for this initiative, our aim was to define the importance and meaning behind the ‘Always’ in Black History Always,” said Rachel Epstein, senior director, Emerging Brands & Properties. “Through moments past and present, this film celebrates the truth that Black history and achievement is happening all around us, all the time.”

The Undefeated continued its Black History Always storytelling this week with a look back at the 75th anniversary of “The Handshake”. Learn more about the storytelling here.

Later this month, ESPN MLB analyst Doug Glanville will host “We Are All Jackie,” a 30-minute program on April 29, which will tip a hat to Robinson’s courage and unpack how his strength still lives among those challenged to prove their value.

A mural tribute to Kobe Bryant’s family is featured in the Black History Always brand film. (ESPN)

Expanding a commitment that dates back 25 years, ESPN has launched “Black History Always,” a company-wide content commitment initiative to highlight Black stories beyond the traditional Black History Month in February. Black History Always began with Martin Luther King Jr. Day in January and The Undefeated will identify opportunities throughout the year to resurface and integrate relevant content under the Black History Always theme.

Powered by The Undefeated, ESPN’s content initiative exploring the intersections of sports, race and culture, Black History Always launched Jan. 18 with a series of vignettes featuring well-known athletes and coaches appearing across ESPN television and digital platforms. The celebration will continue year-round, every year.Below is a sampling of the content produced this year; learn more about Black History Always on ESPN Press Room.

– Melissa Rawlins and Andy Hall

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