Client: ESPN
Date: Aug 2019
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For many kids, sports have become a chore rather than fun. Parents and coaches put tons of pressure on children to win, often to their detriment. Because of that pressure, fewer kids are playing sports and many are quitting early.

To combat this, non-profit Aspen Institute has teamed with ESPN and Arnold Worldwide to call attention to the problem with ‘Don’t Retire, Kid,’ which shows a young kid ‘retiring’ from sports.

The ‘Don’t Retire, Kid’ public service announcement is designed to keep more kids in the game. The creative by Arnold underscores the overwhelming number of children who are “retiring” from sports prematurely, attributed to the pressures, stress and rising costs associated with playing sports, which detract kids from the joy and fun they should be experiencing from the game. The first PSA shows a child sitting down at a press conference announcing that he is retiring from all sports.

“The pressure it takes to play at my age, it’s just too much,” he says. He cites “endless advice from parents…coaches who left me on the bench when the game was on the line.” When he takes questions, a reporter asks who he thinks can fix the problems. He says “parents, leagues, coaches, everyone.”

The ad closes with a question: “If 62% of kids have given up on sports, what are we doing wrong?”


Aspen Institute

● Executive Director: Tom Farrey

● Partner Engagement: Otto Strong


● Vice President, Corporate Citizenship: Kevin Martinez

● Manager, Corporate Citizenship: Jennifer Paulette

Arnold Worldwide

● Chief Executive Officer: Kiran Smith

● Chief Creative Officer, Content: Icaro Doria

● Executive Creative Director: James Bray

● VP Creative Director, Copy: Justin Galvin

● VP Creative Director, Art: Sam Mullins

● SVP Executive Producer: Paul Shannon

● SVP Marketing Director: Gail Felcher

● Marketing Manager: Aidan Keefer

● Project Manager: Eric Rubino

Greenpoint Pictures

● Directors: The Hudson Dusters

● Producer: Luke Stevens

● DOP: Nathan Swingle

● Exec Producer: Tatiana Rudzinski

● Exec Producer: Trevor King

Exile Edit

● Producer: Charlotte Delon

● Editor: Matt Murphy

Color Grading: Nice Shoes

Colorist: Phil Choe

Producer: Elizabeth Mitchell