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Press Release

October 17, 2018
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

STARS ACROSS DISNEY|ABC TELEVISION ENCOURAGE AUDIENCES TO #CHOOSEKINDNESS IN MULTI-PLATFORM CAMPAIGN FOR OCTOBER'S NATIONAL BULLYING PREVENTION MONTH

Ryan Seacrest and Carrie Underwood Among Key Spokespeople for Public Service Campaign with Custom Video Spots

Throughout October, stars across Disney|ABC Television are rallying behind National Bullying Prevention Month and encouraging viewers to #ChooseKindness through personal testimonials and videos that reinforce the importance of being kind. Along with nonprofit partners GLSEN, GLAAD, PACER, ESPN’s “Shred Hate” campaign, No Bully, and Common Sense Media, the multi-platform and cross-network initiative, now in its sixth year, focuses on inspiring kids, families and change-makers around the country to put an end to bullying in their communities and online.

All month long, ABC, Freeform and Disney Channel will roll out a series of customized public service announcements (PSAs) with fan favorite stars that call on audiences to end negativity, celebrate their differences, support love and, ultimately, choose kindness. Serving as the primary ambassadors for the campaign are award-winning radio and television personality Ryan Seacrest and seven-time GRAMMY® Award winner, multi-platinum selling, global superstar Carrie Underwood. (PSAs available here: https://www.disneyabcpress.com/disneyabctv/bullying-prevention-month/; ABC PSA: https://youtu.be/EuZoCcngWAQ)

Since first stepping onto the iconic “American Idol” stage, Seacrest has become a fixture in pop culture and media, recently returning as host of the beloved music competition series on ABC, while also co-hosting and executive producing Disney|ABC’s top-rated, nationally syndicated “Live with Kelly and Ryan,” and ABC’s annual live show, “Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve with Ryan Seacrest.” On the radio, Seacrest hosts "On Air with Ryan Seacrest," his market-topping, No. 1 nationally syndicated, Los Angeles morning drive-time show for iHeartMedia's 102.7 KIIS-FM, as well as a nationally syndicated Top 40 radio show.

Underwood lends her new single “Love Wins,” off of her latest album “Cry Pretty,” as an anthem of solidarity throughout Disney|ABC’s month-long campaign. “Cry Pretty,” which Underwood co-produced, debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 and Top Country Album Charts, and is her first album released on Capitol Records Nashville. “Love Wins” was written by Underwood, David Garcia and Brett James.  A custom PSA, produced by Radio Disney Country and featuring Underwood, will debut on Disney Channel and across Radio Disney and Radio Disney Country’s social media platforms and YouTube channels beginning Oct. 2.  Underwood recently received the Hero Award at the 2018 Radio Disney Music Awards recognizing her humanitarian efforts and support of a myriad of charities.

“The Choose Kindness campaign is incredibly important to our identity as Disney|ABC Television, with storytelling across our series and networks that celebrate inclusion, respect and love,” said David Ambroz, executive director, Corporate Citizenship & Internal Communications. “We’re thrilled that for the sixth year, our talent has stepped up to deliver heartfelt and honest messages that encourage our viewers to accept the challenge of choosing kindness, and that our ongoing partnerships with these nonprofit changemakers continue to make a difference in our communities.”

“We are extremely proud to once again partner with Disney|ABC Television on this year’s #ChooseKindness campaign for National Bullying Prevention Month,” said Eliza Byard, GLSEN executive director. “Their invaluable dedication to this cause within its programming, through its talent and more continues to be an inspiring example for young viewers everywhere. As a national education organization working to create safe and inclusive K-12 schools for LGBTQ youth, GLSEN has seen firsthand what happens when students stand up against bullying â€“ as happened just last week in thousands of schools nationwide during GLSEN’s Ally Week. When young people are encouraged to choose kindness, respect and taught how to be allies for one another, school becomes a safer and more welcoming environment in which all students can fully reach their academic potential.”

In addition to the PSAs, several stars offered honest testimonials of their personal experiences with bullying. From being called names to being teased about their weight to being judged by the color of their skin, these heartfelt videos offer audiences a glimpse into an epidemic that their favorite stars are not immune to, as well as uplifting messages on how to take a stand for those being bullied around them.

Among the stars featured in the videos and photos throughout the month are Kelly Ripa (“Live With Kelly and Ryan”); Taran Killam (“Single Parents”); Leighton Meester (“Single Parents”); James Roday (“A Million Little Things”); Ron Livingston (“A Million Little Things”); Randall Park (“Fresh Off The Boat”); Nathan Fillion (“The Rookie”); Raven-Symoné (“Raven’s Home”); Issac Ryan Brown (“Raven’s Home,” “Kim Possible”);  Sasha Pieterse (“Pretty Little Liars: The Perfectionists”); Janel Parrish (“Pretty Little Liars: The Perfectionists”) and many more.

In partnership with GLAAD and PACER, Disney|ABC will also celebrate two key dates in October that call on audiences to show their support and stand against bullying. On Thursday, Oct. 18, GLAAD encourages supporters to wear purple for “Spirit Day” to stand against bullying and demonstrate support for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) youth. On Wednesday, Oct. 24, viewers are encouraged to celebrate PACER’s Unity Day. Wear and share orange to show unity against bullying and band together to celebrate for kindness, acceptance and inclusion.

Additional campaigns being celebrated throughout the month of October include GLSEN's "Ally Week" and ESPN’s “Shred Hate,” a bullying prevention program from ESPN, MLB and X Games which seeks to eliminate bullying by encouraging kids to choose kindness. As part of “Shred Hate,” No Bully, a nonprofit organization that ignites student compassion to eradicate bullying and cyberbullying, is partnering with local school districts and training them how to implement the award-winning No Bully System. To date, more than 25,791 students have been impacted by the program in schools across the country and an additional 60,000 students will be reached in the 2018-2019 school year.

About Disney|ABC Television
Disney|ABC Television is comprised of The Walt Disney Company’s entertainment and news television properties and radio business. These include The ABC Television Network, which provides entertainment and news programming to viewers via more than 230 affiliated stations across the U.S.; cable network Freeform, which targets millennials; and Disney Channels Worldwide, a portfolio of 120 kid-driven, family-inclusive entertainment channels, including Disney Channel, Disney XD, Disney Junior, and Radio Disney brands.  Disney|ABC also has oversight of the eight ABC Owned Television Stations; ABC Studios, a global leader in the development, production and distribution of entertainment content across broadcast, cable and streaming platforms; and manages The Walt Disney Company’s equity interest in A+E Networks, which include channels from A+E, Lifetime and History brands.

Media Relations
Nicole Balgemino
818-973-4043
[email protected]

Greg Khach
818-460-6373
[email protected]

Follow @ABCBeInspired for up-to-date news on #ChooseKindness

Website: www.abc.com/choosekindness
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Twitter: @ABCBeInspired
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