Throughout history Black athletes have instrumentally shaped the landscape of hockey, but their contributions have often gone overlooked. A new documentary being produced by LeBron James and Drake will bring the narratives of these unsung Black hockey trailblazers to the forefront, Deadline reported.
The film—dubbed Black Ice—will examine the history of racism within the sport and document the harrowing experiences Black players have endured both on and off the ice. Sitting at the intersection of sports and activism, it will capture how Black players used their careers to break racial barriers for generations of athletes who would go on to carve their own paths on the ice. Black Ice will also delve into the history behind the Colored Hockey League of the Maritimes and shine a light on the continued fight for representation in the NHL. The documentary is being created under the SpringHill Company, Uninterrupted Canada and DreamCrew Entertainment. James, Drake, Maverick Carter and Adel “Future” Nur will serve as executive producers.
“I was not only surprised but inspired to learn about the stories of the often overlooked and unheralded Black pioneers of hockey,” Hubert Davis, the film’s director, said in a statement. “I think it is more important than ever before for all generations, particularly young people of color, to understand and see the diverse faces who have contributed and shaped one the essential fabrics of our country.”
In recent years, Black hockey players have finally started getting long-overdue recognition for what they have contributed to the sport. In 2018, Willie O’Ree—the first Black player in the National Hockey League—was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame nearly six decades after breaking the color barrier. A year after his induction, a documentary titled Willie that highlighted his pioneering journey was released.