POWERADE Taps Derrick Rose for “Rose From Concrete” Ad Narrated by Tupac Shakur

NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–The athletes we most respect and aspire to be like consistently power through obstacles and overcome adversity in their pursuit of greatness. But every legendary athlete shares one undeniable truth with each of his or her admirers: They are just a kid from somewhere.

POWERADE’s newest campaign aims to inspire by taking a passionate stand for the potential in every young athlete. It supports the belief that no matter where athletes get their start, or what obstacles they face in life, through hard work and determination, they can advance from the very bottom to the very top.

The campaign is launching with a 60-second spot titled “Rose From Concrete” starring basketball superstar Derrick Rose. It follows a symbolic bike ride from Chicago’s South Side to the very stadium where Rose’s dreams become a reality. The ride reflects the journey of Rose, from a young man growing up in Englewood, Illinois, facing constant adversity, to his rise on the way to becoming one of world’s most respected and driven basketball players of today.

“Derrick’s strength and perseverance in the face of this week’s setback are truly inspirational to all,” said Shannon Watkins, group brand director, POWERADE. “Now more than ever, there is no professional athlete more qualified to motivate young athletes to overcome adversity, no matter where they are from, what they are dealing with or who they aspire to become.”

The spot — filmed in Chicago in December 2014 — features a poignant voiceover from rapper, poet and actor Tupac Shakur. The inspirational words were taken from his song, “Mama’s Just a Little Girl,” and follow the theme that Tupac reiterated constantly during his life; people can achieve success despite whatever difficult circumstances they face.

You see you wouldn’t ask why

The rose that grew from the concrete

Had damaged petals.

On the contrary we would celebrate its tenacity.

We would all love its will to reach the sun.

Well, we are the roses. This is the concrete.

And these are my damaged petals.

Don’t ask me why … ask me how.

“Tupac Shakur serves as the ultimate example of someone who couldn’t be limited by the environment in which he was raised,” said Guy Duncan, group director, integrated marketing content, POWERADE. “We are honored the Tupac Shakur estate has allowed us to use his inspiring message to tell our story to a generation that didn’t get the chance to experience his larger-than-life presence.”

To further support young athletes, POWERADE is launching an online marketplace (www.justakidfrom.com) where people can design and purchase customized “Just A Kid” apparel touting the name of their hometown. The collection will include sweatshirts, T-shirts and hats. Net proceeds from the marketplace will be donated to the Boys & Girls Clubs of America.

“Just A Kid” will come to life through broadcast, out-of-home, digital, social, PR, on-site activations starting with NCAA Final Four events in Indianapolis, Ind., and point-of-purchase throughout 2015. The campaign was developed in partnership with advertising agency Wieden+Kennedy in Portland, Ore.

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