Olympic Pride, American Prejudice

Tune-in Friday night for the heroic story of 18 African American Olympians who defied Jim Crow and Adolf Hitler to win hearts and medals at the 1936 Berlin Olympics.


The story of Alabama’s Jesse Owens at the 1936 Olympic Games is well known. But there were 17 OTHER Black Olympians who also competed in Berlin whose stories have been forgotten. A new film, OLYMPIC PRIDE, AMERICAN PREJUDICE sets the record straight.

Set against the strained atmosphere of a racially divided America, torn between boycotting Hitler’s Olympics or participating in the Third Reich’s grandest affair, the film follows the journey of 18 men and women at the Summer Olympic Games. These athletes represented a country that considered them second-class citizens and competed in a nation promoting Aryan superiority and anti-Semitism. Despite these challenges, they became world heroes, though their glory was short-lived upon returning home.

Produced by Coffee Bluff Pictures and narrated by award-winning actor Blair Underwood, this 90-minute documentary highlights a vital yet unheralded part of history that remains relevant today.

About the Filmmaker:

Deborah Riley Draper is an award-winning and critically acclaimed filmmaker and advertising agency veteran. Named one of Variety Magazine’s “Top 10 Documakers to Watch,” Draper’s storytelling brings to light unseen and unheard voices, transforming the independent film landscape.

In 2017, Draper received an NAACP Image Award nomination for this documentary, which she directed, produced, and wrote. Olympic, American Prejudice was also recognized globally by HRH Prince Albert of Monaco for the 2017 Sportel World Peace and Sport Award.

OLYMPIC PRIDE, AMERICAN PREJUDICE will air Friday July 19 at 9:30PM on APT and the PBS App.

More APT News


Skip to content