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Colin In Black & White: Inside Netflix's Series About Colin Kaepernick's High School Years

Updated: Aug 6

Former NFL player and activist Colin Kaepernick is ready to tell his story. Netflix announced he and Oscar-nominated filmmaker Ava DuVernay will collaborate for the new scripted limited series, Colin in Black & White. The six-part show will center around Kaepernick's high school years, tracking his rise as both an athlete and political activist.

“Too often we see race and Black stories portrayed through a white lens,” Kaepernick said in a statement. “We seek to give new perspective to the differing realities that Black people face. We explore the racial conflicts I faced as an adopted Black man in a white community, during my high school years. It’s an honor to bring these stories to life in collaboration with Ava for the world to see.”

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Michael Starrburry (Emmy-nominated for his writing on When They See Us) will write and executive produce the series alongside DuVernay and Kaepernick. The titular athlete will narrate the series, while The Hollywood Reporter notes the show will cast an actor to play Kaepernick's younger self.

"With his act of protest, Colin Kaepernick ignited a national conversation about race and justice with far-reaching consequences for football, culture and for him, personally," DuVernay said in a statement. "Colin’s story has much to say about identity, sports and the enduring spirit of protest and resilience. I couldn’t be happier than to tell this story with the team at Netflix."

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In 2016, Kaepernick made headlines when he protested systemic racism and police brutality by kneeling during the national anthem at a San Fransisco 49ers game. His peaceful protest was deemed controversial and led to both criticism and admiration within the NFL and beyond. The quarterback became a free agent the following year and filed a lawsuit against the league. (Both parties reached a settlement in February 2019.) He has yet to be offered a deal to return to the NFL. In May, Kaepernick launched a Legal Defense Initiative, alongside his nonprofit Know Your Rights Camp, to support protesters in Minneapolis in need of legal representation.

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“We’re proud to bring Colin’s experience and his creative vision to life as he joins Ava to share his powerful story and message with all our members around the world,” Cindy Holland, Vice President of Original Content for Netflix, said in a statement. “It is an unparalleled union of two strong and defining voices coming together to tell the story about what it’s like to be Black in America.”

Writers on Colin in Black & White finished the show's scripts in May, and Deadline reports Netflix hopes the series will begin filming this fall, if safe to do so amid the coronavirus pandemic. There's no official release date for the project.

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