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Viacom’s MTV, BET, VH1, Paramount and EPIX; Vogue, Cosmopolitan, Essence, Marie Claire, Women’s Health and Bad Robot Join Wear Orange Campaign

Viacom’s Scratch Produces First in Series of National Gun Violence Awareness Day PSAs
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Key Buildings and Landmarks Nationwide To Turn Orange on June 2; “Wear Orange” Inspired by Chicago Teens Who Refused to Be Silent in the Face of Daily Gun Violence

CHICAGO – Less than two months ahead of the second National Gun Violence Awareness Day on June 2, the Wear Orange campaign (www.WearOrange.org) today announced that a dozen prominent national media brands – plus a series of iconic landmarks, State Capitols and City Halls across the country – will turn orange this June 2.

New details unveiled today include:

  • Viacom and its brands will lend extensive support to the Wear Orange campaign, tailoring efforts to the company’s unique audiences in the run up to National Gun Violence Awareness Day on June 2, 2016

    • Viacom will donate on-air PSA inventory across several networks during the month of May, as well as its giant screens in Times Square ahead of and on June 2.
    • EPIX will promote the campaign adjacent to all airings of the EPIX Original Documentary “Under the Gun,” a new film from executive producer Katie Couric that examines America’s gun debate, premiering May 15 on EPIX and EPIX.com; EPIX will also turn its on-air logo orange on June 2.
    • MTV, BET and VH1 will turn orange on June 2, making their on-air logos orange and featuring network talent wearing orange, promoting #WearOrange on social media platforms, lending news coverage and encouraging employees to participate.
    • Scratch, Viacom’s creative consultancy, has partnered with Everytown for Gun Safety in support of Wear Orange. Scratch developed marketing concepts and advised on content strategy in support of National Gun Violence Awareness Day.

    • Paramount will light the iconic water tower on its Hollywood lot orange the evening of June 2 and encourage employees to participate and wear orange.
    • Five national women’s magazines—Vogue, Cosmopolitan, Essence, Marie Claire and Women’s Health have all signed on to take part in Wear Orange 2016. More details on their participation will be announced in the weeks ahead.
    • Bad Robot, a production company formed by filmmaker J.J. Abrams, will light the Bad Robot Tower above their Santa Monica headquarters orange on June 2nd in honor of the second National Gun Violence Awareness Day.
    • Wear Orange has been accepted as an official lighting partner by the Building Owners and Managers Association of Chicago and this year key buildings and landmarks will turn orange on June 2 in cities across the country including the famous Zakim Memorial Bridge in Boston, Coit Tower in San Francisco, The Durst Organization’s One Bryant Park and 4 Times Square in New York City, the Civil Courts Building in St. Louis, One Lyon Place in White Plains, State Capitols in Harrisburg and Providence as well as City Halls in Brockton, Hoboken and San Francisco. People who want to help turn their city’s skylines orange can visit www.wearorange.org/skyline to find out more information on how to get involved.
    • Continuing to build in year two, over 80 partners are already on board to Wear Orange including a strong showing of support from the faith community with groups like Bishops United Against Gun Violence, Social Action Commission African Methodist Episcopal Church (AME), Faith in Public Life, Jewish Women International and Rabbis Against Gun Violence. In addition, national membership organizations such as National Urban League, American Psychological Association and MoveOn.org will be participating on June 2. More partners and supporters will be announced in the weeks ahead; a full list of current partners can be found here.
    • More than 50 mayors from 21 states have already agreed to participate by wearing orange. Participants include Mayors Barrett (Milwaukee), Elorza (Providence), Ford (Tuskegee), Lee (San Francisco), Roberts (Charlotte), Schneider (Santa Barbara), and Walsh (Boston).

    “When I found out Viacom and its networks like VH1, MTV, and BET were going orange—which so many of my friends and I watch—I was ecstatic,” said Nza-Ari Khepra, founder of Project Orange Tree and co-creator of Wear Orange. “I can’t believe something we started in high school just a few years ago has grown so big, so fast. It’s because of partners like the ones announced today—and all of our incredible partners, really — that National Gun Violence Awareness Day’s message about saving lives from gun violence will be seen and heard by millions more people.”

    Wear Orange was inspired by friends of Hadiya Pendleton, a 15-year-old Chicago high school student killed by gunfire, who decided to honor her life by wearing orange – the color hunters wear in the woods to protect themselves and others. On June 2, 2015, what would have been Hadiya’s 18th birthday, more than 200 organizations and influencers asked people nationwide to join them by wearing orange to honor her life, the lives of the more than 90 Americans killed by gun violence and the hundreds more who are injured every day. President Obama, Julianne Moore, Russell Simmons, Sarah Silverman, the New York Mets, MTV, Cosmopolitan, Motown Records, Michael J. Fox, Questlove and Katie Couric are just a few of those who answered the call last year, helping the #WearOrange message reach more than 220 million people in a single day.

    Previously announced highlights of the campaign include:


    • Orange Art: Through a partnership with the Creative Action Network, the campaign has created an online gallery where anyone can submit designs that reflect their interpretation of Wear Orange. Every accepted work is currently available for sale and can be printed on demand (as a tee, mug, print, etc.). Supporters can vote on the designs here and the top choice will become the official Wear Orange 2016 fan tee.
    • Voices of Orange Competition: Wear Orange is partnering with Street-Level Youth Media to sponsor the first-ever “Voices of Orange” talent competition. Entries poured in from all over Chicago the last several weeks – from youth ages 15 to 22, including rap, song and spoken-word poetry – and the winner will be announced next month. The winner will receive $3,000 and have his or her work heard by “Voices of Orange” celebrity judges Andra Day, Malik Yusef and Andrew Bird. The winner will also get the opportunity to perform for the crowd at Chicago’s Party for Peace on National Gun Violence Awareness Day on June 2, 2016.
    • Chicago’s Party for Peace: Last June’s Party for Peace was the national marquee celebration of Wear Orange. This year’s celebration will focus on youth empowerment and serve as an ongoing reminder of the roots of the campaign. The party will include several musical performances, including the Voices of Orange competition winner.

    In addition to the Chicago-based Party for Peace, there will be opportunities all over the country for Americans to get involved and Wear Orange including at Orange meet-ups. These events will showcase the full creativity of Orange supporters, ranging from marquee events in iconic places across the country to concerts, rallies and after school events in local communities, to film screenings focused on gun violence prevention, to several friends gathering to share a picture on social media using the #WearOrange hashtag. Events will be searchable via an online map and easy to track on June 2 by following the #WearOrange hashtag.

    In the months since the launch of Wear Orange and the first-ever National Gun Violence Awareness Day on June 2, 2015, the effort has reached millions of Americans. On December 14, 2015, as part of the commemoration of the three-year mark since the Sandy Hook shooting and in response to the San Bernardino shooting, Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, a part of Everytown for Gun Safety, hosted “Orange Walks” to help amplify the gun safety movement. The Orange Walks, which took place in over 100 cities nationwide, were the biggest offline event in the organization to date. Additionally, orange carpets replaced the traditional red carpet at Spike Lee’s New York City premiere of Chi-Raq and at the Sundance Film Festival’s debut of Katie Couric’s documentary Under the Gun.