MILWAUKEE — Giannis Antetokounmpo is the narrator and focus of a new 12-minute film commissioned by the Facebook/Meta-owned messaging app WhatsApp.
The film, titled "Naija Odyssey", tells the story of Giannis' roots in the country of his birth, Nigeria, and the country where he grew up, Greece. One of the film's main themes is how Giannis dealt with these two identities as he navigated the world of basketball and became the star player of the championship-winning Milwaukee Bucks.
Antetokounmpo and his mother, Veronica, narrate the film. It's loosely based on the Greek epic “The Odyssey."
“In Greece, my teachers told stories of travelers battling the sea, fighting to find their way home — to find themselves. I was on that same journey," Giannis says in the film's trailer.
“Naija Odyssey" is directed by Nono Ayuso and Rodrigo Inada and is edited by Mikkel E.G. Nielsen, the winner of a 2021 Oscar for film editing for Amazon Studios’ “Sound of Metal.”
"Naija Odyssey" will be released on Sept. 21 on their social media accounts, YouTube and Amazon Prime.
Giannis agreed to a deal with WhatsApp in February of 2022.