Steve Carell, Colin Hanks and Ken Jeong are featured in a new Stand Up To Cancer campaign, titled "Baseball Believes," filmed at Boston's Fenway Park that celebrates amazing plays from Major League Baseball's Postseason history. The six spots, which include the actual broadcasts of the historic plays, connect believing in miracles on the playing field with a shared vision of ending cancer. The spots will begin airing in early September in stadiums, on MLB Network, FOX and ESPN, and will continue through the 2013 baseball season.
Major League Baseball is a founding donor of Stand Up To Cancer and, together with its 30 Clubs, has committed more than $30 million to the initiative to date.
Carell, Hanks and Jeong took to the field at Fenway Park to re-create signature moments in baseball history that led fans across the nation to believe that anything was possible. After the three actors highlight the importance of these moments in baseball history, the spot ends with a call to action, encouraging fans to join Major League Baseball in its belief that we can end cancer forever.
The four baseball moments are:
- New York Yankees All-Star Derek Jeter makes the famous backhand toss to Jorge Posada in Game 3 of the 2001 American League Division Series to tag out Jeremy Giambi at the plate.
- Boston Red Sox catcher Carlton Fisk waves his 12th inning home run to "stay fair" to win Game 6 of the 1975 World Series against the Cincinnati Reds at Fenway Park.
- New York Giants center fielder Willie Mays makes his over-the-shoulder basket catch to rob Vic Wertz of the Cleveland Indians of extra bases in Game 1 of the 1954 World Series. The catch has been heralded as one of the greatest in baseball history.
- Los Angeles Dodgers star Kirk Gibson, hobbled by a pulled hamstring and a swollen knee, delivers a pinch-hit, walk-off home run off dominant Oakland Athletics closer Dennis Eckersley in Game 1 of the 1988 World Series and limps around the bases. The legendary play is often referenced as a prime example of the miracles of Postseason baseball.
Baseball Commissioner Allan H. (Bud) Selig commented, "This campaign is a part of Major League Baseball's unwavering efforts to support and help empower Stand Up To Cancer in its noble work fighting all forms of cancer through the spirit of collaboration. We are proud that the most memorable and improbable moments in Postseason history can be used as a way to inspire people to believe that anything is possible, including an end to cancer."
"Under the steadfast leadership and dedication of Commissioner Bud Selig and all 30 teams, MLB's financial support of SU2C has been vitally important to the success of our mission. Equally important is what MLB has done to help build our grassroots movement by encouraging baseball fans everywhere to support our researchers, who work tirelessly to develop new therapies for patients to save lives now," said SU2C Co-Founder Rusty Robertson.
"Everyone at MLB has helped enormously with our efforts to convey this key message: each and every one of us has a role to play in ending cancer, and we are profoundly grateful for that," added SU2C Co-Founder Sue Schwartz.
"As the husband of a cancer survivor, I know how important it is to believe that we can beat this disease," said Jeong. "I'm proud to be a part of Stand Up To Cancer and Major League Baseball's effort to build more support for the scientists on the front lines of the fight."
The spot was shot at Fenway Park during its 100th year anniversary and will build on the previous spots created at Major League ballparks, including the 2010 SU2C PSA, which featured actor Jake Gyllenhaal at Dodger Stadium and debuted during the 2010 All-Star Game at Angel Stadium of Anaheim. Since the SU2C launch in 2008, Major League Baseball has continued to promote the initiative year-round, including a featured spotlight during the World Series and other MLB Jewel events. Notably, in 2011, MLB and SU2C introduced in-stadium SU2C "I Stand Up For" placards, a powerful symbol of fans, Club leadership, managers and players uniting in the fight against cancer.
About the Stand Up To Cancer Initiative
Stand Up To Cancer (SU2C) -- a program of the Entertainment Industry Foundation (EIF), a 501(c)3 charitable organization -- raises funds to hasten the pace of groundbreaking translational research that can get new therapies to patients quickly and save lives. In the fall of 2007, a group of women whose lives have all been affected by cancer in profound ways began working together to marshal the resources of the media and entertainment industries in the fight against this disease.
Members of the SU2C Executive Leadership Council (ELC) include Cancer Advocate and Television Journalist Katie Couric; Sherry Lansing, Chairperson of the Entertainment Industry Foundation's Board of Directors and founder of the Sherry Lansing Foundation; EIF President and CEO Lisa Paulsen; EIF Senior Vice President Kathleen Lobb; Rusty Robertson and Sue Schwartz of the Robertson Schwartz Agency; Pamela Oas Williams, President of Laura Ziskin Productions and Executive Producer of Stand Up To Cancer's In-House Production Team, and Nonprofit Executive Ellen Ziffren. All of the ELC members are co-producers of the 2012 televised special. The late Laura Ziskin, executive producer of both the Sept. 5, 2008 and Sept. 10, 2010 broadcasts, was also a member of the ELC. SU2C was formally launched on May 27, 2008. Sung Poblete, Ph.D, R.N., has served as SU2C's president and CEO since 2011.
Founding donor Major League Baseball has provided both financial support and countless opportunities to build the Stand Up To Cancer grassroots movement by encouraging fans all over the country to get involved.
The creative team behind the Baseball Believes campaign includes Janet Champ and Rick McQuiston for Switzerland and Director Andrew Becker for @radicalmedia.