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More than 20 years after Magic Johnson held a press conference to announce he was HIV-positive, ESPN is revisiting that significant moment in a documentary, The Announcement, scheduled to air March 11 on the sports channel.
The film, directed by Nelson George, and presented by ESPN Films and NBA Entertainment, explores how the basketball legend continues to cope with the disease. It features narration by Johnson himself and interviews with confidantes including family (wife Cookie, son Andre) and former NBA colleagues Larry Bird, Karl Malone, James Worthy and Kurt Rambis. Hollywood pals Chris Rock and Arsenio Hall also join the roster of talking heads.
Johnson stunned L.A. Lakers fans and the world beyond in Nov. 7, 1991, when he publicly revealed his diagnosis — a brave, defining move that put a public face on the plight of HIV and AIDs.
“Was I scared? No question about it I was scared,” he recalls in the documentary. “I wasn’t scared to announce it; I wasn’t scared of the media. What I was scared of is… would I see them again?”
Watch the trailer below:
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