Verizon, in partnership with Granity Studios and Believe Entertainment Group, has launched Kobe Bryant’s Dear Basketball on go90 and across its Yahoo Sports, AOL and Complex platforms.
The film is a five-minute animated version of Bryant’s poetic ode to the game of basketball, which generated 50 million views worldwide when it was first published on The Players Tribune in 2015. The film brings together animator and film director Glen Keane, Academy Award-winning composer John Williams and executive producer Bryant.
Dear Basketball brings to life Bryant’s farewell letter to the game through Keane’s hand-drawn animation and Williams’ musical composition, as well as Bryant’s narration. Believe Entertainment Group, co-executive producers of Dear Basketball, forged the distribution partnership with go90.
“Verizon’s go90 welcomes an array of creators, from icons to up-and-comers, providing them with a flexible canvas on which to share their stories,” said go90’s chief content officer, Ivana Kirkbride. “On the heels of its Academy Awards shortlist inclusion for best animated short film, the piece is a delightful new addition to our sports and entertainment offering.”
Bryant added: “Dear Basketball is a story about the child within all of us, having dreams and loving something so much that you know when it’s time to say goodbye. Glen Keane and John Williams are masters of their crafts and bring a raw emotion to this story that I never thought possible. We created this film with the sincere hope that it resonates with and inspires fans of all ages, in all walks of life, to be the best version of themselves. Being able to present the short on go90 and across many of Verizon’s media brands gives more people an opportunity to see the film and be inspired.”