LeBron James commands the game to his will. He makes a massive impact the moment he steps onto the court, and he does so with force. He needs a shoe that can keep up with the physics-bending way that he plays. In turn, the LeBron XIX makes its mark with protection for the player. For the campaign, we wanted to draw a parallel with the impact James makes on the court to the one he makes off—in this case the efforts James makes to lift others up in his hometown of Akron, Ohio. ‘Leave A Mark’ was born.
Not every athlete uses their platform to lift others up. Throughout his GOAT-level career, LeBron James has always made space for others and cleared the way for those who could be up next. For the launch of the LeBron XIX, we were tasked with highlighting the space-making aspect of James in parallel with the performance aspect of the new shoe.
First up was an open letter to James’ fans. From the voice of James himself, we wrote about the moments in his life where space was made for him by others and how it allowed him room to get to where he is today—and how he pays it forward by doing the same.
Next up was creating an audio/visual experience featuring three heavy-hitting heroes highlighting how huge an effect James has had on their respective paths.
We photographed each person and recorded an interview to pair with their portraits. A visual collage with quotes over photography deepened the story and finished the picture of James as a maker of space for others. It all set the table for the LeBron XIX and showed that the game of basketball goes well beyond the buzzer.
Number one was featuring product, with Nike Senior Director Tim Day. He talked about how much inspiration he has gained from working with James—and how the new shoe rises above what came before to protect the player.
Number two was dialed in on a former hooper out of James’ alma mater St. Mary’s named Jayvon Graves. He talked about James coming to the games, how much support he offered and how much that accelerated his trajectory.
And third, we served up the story of Don Marie Reid, a soon to be college student who earned a scholarship through James’ I Promise program which helped set her direction ever higher.