By Ken Reed
A new split-screen ad called “You Can’t Stop Us” from Nike has people praising its emotional impact.
The overarching message is that athletes — and all of us — can join together to create change.
“We’re never alone, and that is our strength,” says U.S. soccer star Megan Rapinoe in the ad. “Because when we’re doubted, we’ll play as one.”
The ad is also a testament to creative editing. The spot is a collection of 72 sports action sequences, which were pulled from more than 4,000 pieces of footage. Fifty-three athletes — featuring both the everyday variety and international superstars — and 24 sports are represented. The ad features various athletes melding into other athletes across a split screen.
Rapinoe, in a Nike news release about the ad is quoted as saying:
“Players may be back on the pitch, but we’re not going back to an old normal. We need to continue to reimagine this world and make it better. We have all these people in the streets, using their voices, and those voices are being heard. I ask people to be energized by this moment and not let up. I believe it’s everybody’s responsibility to advocate for change.”
The ad has been mostly well-received across the Twitterverse.
“This is the best sports ad I’ve ever seen — Nike does it again,” former pro golfer Anya Alvarez tweeted.
It’s probably not the best sports ad ever, but it’s one of the most creative, and it definitely carries a powerful and important message.
— Ken Reed, Sports Policy Director, League of Fans
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League of Fans is a sports reform project founded by Ralph Nader to fight for the higher principles of justice, fair play, equal opportunity and civil rights in sports; and to encourage safety and civic responsibility in sports industry and culture.
A League of Fans Special Report