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5 things to know before 'Colin in Black & White' debuts on Netflix

The show is focusing on Colin Kaepernick's formative years growing up in Turlock and attending Pitman High School.

TURLOCK, Calif. — A new drama series highlighting the formative years of Turlock native and former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick will soon debut on Netflix.

The drama series comes from co-creators Ava DuVernary and Colin Kaepernick himself.

It's a limited drama series, focusing on a "coming of age" story based on Kaepernick's experiences in Turlock. The series tackles race, class and culture through the view of Kaepernick.

Kaepernick serves as a present-day narrator for his story while actor Jaden Michael plays young Kaepernick. Nick Offerman and Mary Louise Parker portray his parents.

It's a series that highlights his formative years at Pitman High School, well before he kneeled for the national anthem to bring attention to systematic oppression and before the football stardom and activism.

Here's five things to know about Turlock's Colin Kaepernick before the show drops on Netflix.

RELATED: Roger Goodell says he wished he had 'listened earlier' to Colin Kaepernick

The show explores the story of his childhood

In a blog post from Colin Kaepernick and Ava DuVernary, the duo explained the inspiration behind the show.

Kaepernick said he faced different challenges in high school that included obstacles "as a Black kid growing up in a white family in a white community."

He shared the idea to make a series about his high school years with DuVernay.

"Colin called me and shared that he wanted to tell the story of his childhood somehow. What interested me was the idea that, through his story, I could shed light on a core belief that I hold: that we can all be the hero, the lead character, of our own lives. It sounds simple, but it’s a powerful idea," DuVernay said.

Colin in Black & White is not "another autobiographical series"

"It was about challenging the process to determine how we could expand the core of a young person’s path to power into a story that can appeal widely and personally to others. The goal was to take the kernel of the idea and make it mean something to viewers whether they’re watching in Detroit or Dubai, Shreveport or Senegal," DuVernay said.

Kaepernick said he didn't have many references or guides growing to help him navigate some of the experiences he had as a Black child.

"When we were thinking about telling this story, we wanted to explore that idea more and give people references of how these situations can impact and shape one's identity and growth," he said.

Kaepernick was a three-sport athlete at Pitman High School

Kaepernick is well known for his activism and his tenure with the San Francisco 49ers. However, his fellow students at Pitman High School once knew him as a three-sport athlete for the Pitman Pride.

Back in 2018, Kaepernick was inducted into the first ever Pitman Hall of Fame. He was known for his excellence in basketball, baseball and football. According to Pitman High School, he was the second player from Stanislaus County to ever make an appearance in a Super Bowl.

Kaepernick graduated from Pitman in 2006.

His future children's book for 2022 highlights similar themes

Kaepernick recently released a children's picture book inspired by a childhood memory, one that made him realize he was different from his adopted white family. 

He remembered an exercise in kindergarten where they had to draw a family portrait, and he realized a distinction when he used a lighter crayon for his family and a darker crayon for himself. "I Color Myself Different" is scheduled to be released on April 5, 2022.

Kaepernick has been recognized with the Ripple of Hope Award

Kaepernick was among those recognized by the Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights organization in 2020.

He was recognized along with Dr. Anthony Fauci, legendary civil rights leader Dolores Huerta and more. The award is given to those who use their stature in the community for positive social change. 

In 2020, Kaepernick said of the Kennedy honor that, "In 2017, I was in the audience honoring Mr. Harry Belafonte as he accepted the Robert F. Kennedy Ripple of Hope Award. 

He continued in a statement, saying, "I am humbled to follow the footsteps of individuals like Mr. B and to be in the company of all the other laureates. Thank you for this prestigious award."

RELATED: Dr. Fauci, Colin Kaepernick to be honored with 2020 Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights award


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