The Australian Football League (AFL) has launched a series of emotional short films to celebrate the stories of the game.
The films are part of a new brand platform, Don’t Believe in Never, which aims to tell stories from different tiers of the game, from grassroots levels through to the professional leagues.
The launch films feature Sydney Swans player and former Sudanese refugee Aliir Aliir, Dema, a muslim teenager who plays in a local team in Western Sydney and Richmond Tigers coach Damien Hardwick.
The films share the stories of the obstacles and adversity the subjects have overcome to achieve their dreams on the football field.
AFL head of marketing and insights Julian Dunne said, “There are so many stories across our game where people have achieved something remarkable against all odds.
“These stories exist at the grassroots level right through to the elite game and when they are told in the right way they create emotion and broader interest in the game.
“Fans tell us that footy is more than just a spectacle, it’s a place to escape, be hopeful, connect, celebrate and commiserate, so we feel this is a strong new platform to communicate what is both unique and special about our game,” he said.
The short films will run across TV, OOH, digital and social media and will be supported by an acquisition program called the ‘Neverbeens’ which aims to attract new fans to the games and drive match attendance.
The AFL plans to continue to create new films to celebrate key moments in the sports calendar, such as the Sir Doug Nicholls Round, which is an annual celebration of Indigenous culture.
The campaign was created by Clemenger BBDO Melbourne.