Kleenex Brand Unveils New Olympic Documentary

Aug. 11, 2008, 10:29 a.m. (ET)
  DALLAS, August 8, 2008-Mia Hamm, Michael Johnson, and Mary Lou Retton, along with dozens of Olympic legends, hopefuls, and fans, let it out about life-altering personal and athletic moments like they've never done before, sharing their emotional stories on the Kleenex brand's blue couch in a new documentary entitled let it out: the movie, which will premiere in both Beijing and the U.S. this month.

Taking the insight that the Olympics Games are an emotional time and have inspired people in their own lives, the Kleenex brand invited and encouraged Olympic Games fans, hopefuls and legends to sit on the blue couch and let it out - open up about the powerful emotional moments that made a difference in their lives. Jesse Owens's granddaughter emotionally recalls how her personal Olympic moment - carrying the torch into the Olympic stadium in 1984 - was made poignant as it was done in her grandfather's memory. Muhammad Ali's wife describes why the boxing legend's memorable lighting of the torch in Atlanta deeply moved so many people in the nation, including Ali himself. And in an unprecedented first, hockey great Mike Eruzione gives a joint interview with his father, Jeep, who hilariously tells the story of the 1980 U.S. hockey team's miracle win over the Soviets. These, and other Olympic stories in the film, allow viewers to see ordinary people like themselves do extraordinary things and be inspired by them.

The film premiered on August 11, 2008, in Beijing at USA House, headquarters to the USOC, to an audience of Olympic athletes and U.S. media. Olympic fans in the U.S. are invited to attend a free screening on August 13, 2008, in 25 select theatres across the country. The film will be available for viewing on the web beginning August 14, 2008. Information on the cities where free screenings will take place and additional details can be found at http://www.letitout.com/.

"Throughout the creation of this film, many people, including consumers, fans and Olympians, have let out their emotions, both related to the Olympic moments and personal," said Anya Schmidt, Kleenex brand manager.  "With the premiere of let it out: the movie, the American public will be able to view these memories that have shaped the lives of those who told their stories on the blue couch and recollect how they too have been touched by the Games. We are excited to share this remarkable journey that we have been on for the last five months with the rest of America."

let it out: the movie is an extension of the Kleenex brand's let it out marketing campaign, started in 2007, and encourages people across the globe to release their emotions by offering the tools to let it out.  Through research, the Kleenex brand found that release helps people feel better but they do not do it often enough.  Our experience revealed that all that is needed for people to emote is a blue couch, a Good Listener and a box of Kleenex tissues, all of which are integral elements to the documentary.

Julie Foudy, three-time Olympic medalist, soccer star, wife and mother, serves as the program spokesperson.  She has traveled with the production team to select cities nationwide to share her own let it out moments from her career in the Olympics with fans and other athletes and encouraged everyone to let it out on the blue couch.

"Being part of this extraordinary documentary has been a remarkable experience for me. As an Olympian, I've experienced very intense emotions and can really relate to the people who sat on the couch and talked about their own range of feelings," said Foudy.  "With this project, the Kleenex brand has given a broad spectrum of Americans an outlet to explore all of the emotions they associate with the Olympic Games and has enabled me to relive my own exciting Olympic moments."

The documentary was directed and produced by Lookalike Productions, founded by twin sisters Lisa Lax and Nancy Stern.  Lax and Stern have participated in the production of six Olympic Games and have won a combined 16 Emmy Awards for their production of more than 500 athlete profiles and short films, including their critically-acclaimed documentary, Emmanuel's Gift.  Lax and Stern utilized a Good Listener - broadcast journalist Paul Hochman - who invited Olympic fans and current and hopeful Olympians to sit on the Kleenex brand's blue couch and share their favorite stories and let it out Olympic Games memories. 

The film began production in March and concluded in July and traveled to select cities and U.S. Olympic Team Trials events including but not limited to San Diego, Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, Philadelphia and New York.

The Kleenex brand has been an official supplier of facial tissue to the U.S. Olympic Team since 2002, beginning with the Olympic Winter Games in Salt Lake City.  For more information on the documentary and to share Olympic Games memories and stories, consumers can visit http://www.letitout.com/.


About Kleenex brand facial tissue

The world's first and America's best-selling facial tissue, the Kleenex brand is recognized by families in more than 150 countries. Invented in 1924, Kleenex brand facial tissues were initially marketed as a sanitary way to remove cold cream and makeup. Once advertising was shifted to emphasize the product's use as a disposable handkerchief, however, sales soared. Always the innovative leader, Kleenex brand facial tissue has met the needs of consumers for more than 80 years with products that provide the comforting, reassuring touch to make things better.


About Kimberly-Clark

Kimberly-Clark and its well-known global brands are an indispensable part of life for people in more than 150 countries. Every day, 1.3 billion people-nearly a quarter of the world's population trust K-C brands and the solutions they provide to enhance their health, hygiene and well- being. With brands such as Kleenex and Scott, Kimberly-Clark holds the No. 1 or No. 2 share position in more than 80 countries. To keep up with the latest K-C news and to learn more about the company's 136-year history of innovation, visit http://www.kimberly-clark.com/.