History Channel has set the premiere date and launch plan for its original documentary “After Jackie,” a look at the second wave of Black professional baseball players who followed the trailblazing Jackie Robinson.
History Channel will premiere the two-hour documentary from LeBron James’ Uninterrupted production imprint, director Andre Gaines (“The One and Only Dick Gregory”) and producer Stanley Nelson (“Attica,” “Miles Davis: Birth of the Cool”) on Saturday, June 18 at 8 p.m. Nelson’s Firelight Films also produced in association with Major League Baseball and in consultatin with the Jackie Robinson Foundation.
History Channel disclosed the launch plan on Friday to coincide with the 75th anniversary of Robinson’s history-making move to break the color barrier in Major League Baseball. On April 15, 1947, Robinson started at first base with the Brooklyn Dodgers, marking the first time a Black man played in the modern Major Leagues and breaking the color barrier in the sport.
“When the Hall of Famer retired to continue his efforts off the field, there was still much work to be done in baseball and players including Bill White, Curt Flood, and future Hall of Famer Bob Gibson picked up where Jackie left off,” per History. “The relentless efforts and sacrifices of these brave men would eventually advance the status of Black players on and off the field, send the league toward greater roster integration, and force the sport of baseball, and the country, to change for the better.”
“After Jackie” will feature extensive archival interviews and footage of White, Flood and Gibson. It also incorporates perspectives from prominent contemporary Major League Baseball players including CC Sabathia, Mookie Betts, Ken Griffey Jr., Joe Torre, Dave Roberts, Al Downing and Tim McCarver.
History is distributing study guides to schools on Jackie Robinson amd his legacy and supporting the Jackie Robinson Foundation’s Scholar’s program as part of initiatives around the documentary.
(Pictured: Andre Gaines, Stanley Nelson)
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