NBC Olympics & LA84 Foundation Partner to Celebrate Iconic 1968 Olympic Games
STAMFORD, Conn. – October 3, 2018 – Tuesday, Oct. 16 marks the 50th anniversary of the iconic Black Power salute by U.S. Olympians Tommie Smith and John Carlos at the 1968 Mexico City Olympics. To celebrate the milestone, NBC Olympics and LA84 Foundation – a legacy foundation of the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics that supports hundreds of non-profit youth sports organizations – are partnering to examine the legacy of the 1968 Games throughout October with a panel discussion in Los Angeles and three programs that will air across NBCSN and Olympic Channel: Home of Team USA.
On Thursday, Oct. 18, NBC Olympics primetime host Mike Tirico will moderate a panel at the annual LA84 Foundation Summit in Los Angeles that will discuss the legacy of the 1968 Olympic Games and their impact today. Panelists will include Pro Football Hall of Famer and NBC Sports analyst Tony Dungy, Olympic bronze medalist Ibtihaj Muhammad and four-time Olympic gold medalist Greg Louganis. The theme of this year’s summit focuses on athlete activism and social justice, while also commemorating the 1968 Olympic Games.
The panel will also screen a short portion of NBC Olympics’ documentary 1968, narrated by four-time Olympic gold medalist and 23-time Grand Slam singles champion Serena Williams. The documentary, which premiered in February during NBC Olympics’ coverage of the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympics, tells the story of the Vietnam War, the assassinations of Martin Luther King Jr. and Robert F. Kennedy, protest movements in North America and Europe, and more. Amidst that backdrop, the Mexico City Games became a stage for the collision of sport and politics.
NBC Olympics will combine 1968 and with highlights from the LA84 Foundation Summit panel discussion to present a unique two-hour programming special entitled 1968: The Legacy of the Mexico City Games that will premiere on October 31 at 8 p.m. ET on NBCSN.
“Every athlete who seeks to make their voice heard beyond the field of play today is part of the legacy of the Mexico City Olympics,” said Jim Bell, President, Production & Programming, NBC Olympics. “We’re grateful to LA84 for the chance to take part in the continuing and important discussion about the intersection of civil rights, sports, and politics.”
“The stand for justice that those three sprinters made that famous day at the 1968 Olympic Games has turned into a multigenerational relay of change and continues to inspire us to use our platform to inspire social change in our work to close the play equity gap and provide opportunities for all kids to play,” said Renata Simril, LA84 Foundation President & CEO.
In addition, an NBC Olympics-produced one-hour special entitled Bring the Fire: A Conversation with John Carlos, will premiere this Thursday, Oct. 4, at 8 p.m. ET on Olympic Channel: Home of Team USA. The program closely examines Carlos and Smith’s black power salute at the medaling ceremony, highlighted by a conversation between the bronze medalist and Olympian Ato Bolden. Immediately following coverage of Bring the Fire: A Conversation with John Carlos, Olympic Channel: Home of Team USA will re-air 1968.
All programming will also stream on NBCSports.com, OlympicChannel.com, the NBC Sports app and Olympic Channel app.
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