Creator behind Iconic Slam Dunking Skeleton worn by the team explains its meaning & embraces Lithuanian basketball culture
For Release -01-07-13 – New York, N.Y. – (Review from Skullman.com) The basketball documentary The Other Dream Team, directed and produced by Marius Markevicius and Jon Weinbach, is a sports and political documentary about the national Lithuanian basketball team that competed at the 1992 Summer Olympic Games It has played in select cities around the country since September and will be out on DVD.
It highlights Lithuanians’ experiences behind the Iron Curtain, where elite athletes were subjected to brutalities of Communist rule. As they hid from KGB agents and feared for their lives, Lithuania’s basketball stars always shared a common goal – to utilize their athletic gifts to help free their country. The Other Dream Team movie cast: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1606829
Aside from the hardships on the road to the 92′ Olympics, the film celebrates the infamous tie-dyed uniforms worn by the Lithuanian Olympic team that feature NY sports artist Greg Speirs’ trademark design, the Original Lithuanian Slam Dunking Skeleton, now a historic piece of Lithuania’s basketball culture.The Other Dream Dream IMDB bio: http://www.imdb.com/name/nm3998173
Misreports about the source of the famous skeletal image were repeated year after year anytime the story of the 1992 Lithuanian Basketball Team came up. However the film touches on setting the facts straight about where the image came from by including a 23 second clip on the artist who created it explaining his inspiration. But the film may not go into enough detail about this fact or devote enough time to clear up the misreports about the true source of the infamous image. It was not created by a rock group. If you thought you knew the story behind the source of the imagery, it’s not what you’ve heard.
Facts: “The ‘Slam Dunking Skullman’ Skeleton, that became a household icon when it was worn on tie dyed uniforms by the Lithuanian Olympic Basketball Team in the 1992 Barcelona Olympics was created by a New York artist named Greg Speirs, who describes his inspiration for the infamous skeletal image in the documentary film. The artist’s Slam-Dunking Skeleton became a legendary icon for the team and for the country of Lithuania. At the 1992 Olympics in Barcelona the Men’s Lithuanian Olympic Basketball Team stepped up to the podium to receive their bronze medals and wore the uniforms for the world to see. His creation has come to represent the spirit of the team and used to promote the film’s run in theaters across the U.S., but his major part in this story has remained in the background until now. The documentary reveals a 23 second clip of the artist describing his inspiration behind the shirt as more people begin to learn the real story behind the source of the image. Journalists writing about this story need not continue to proliferate the misrepresentation about the source of the image because the information is now available to anyone by a simple Google search. They need only to have the integrity to print the truth now that they have been made aware of the facts, otherwise they’re being disingenuous to their readers.” -Mike Thompson, Marketing Director /Skullman.com. YouTube Video:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a9ITlbG55ug Although he is represented in the documentary only for a few seconds his contribution came to become the identity of the team as well as the main image representing the documentary itself. So look carefully, you may miss it.The fact that the image was an independent creation that came from the artist and was not an icon of a musical group still may not have been made totally clear in the movie. Go to www.skullman.com for more info.
The origin of the Slam Dunking Skeleton – from the artist himself: “The 1992 Lithuanian Basketball Team represents what happens in freedom…people excel. The struggle of the Lithuanian team struck a chord with me so I decided to come up with an image which I believed represented them. I came up with the Slam Dunking Skeleton because it symbolized the team, like a Phoenix rising from the ashes and coming up from nothing, and rising up to overcome the obstacles, which are represented by the hands reaching up in the image. The image is one of breaking out of oppression. This was my interpretation in 1992 and the real meaning of the image. Instead of a representation of being dead, this skeleton represents rebirth and a new life. Also, you can’t have freedom without free enterprise”-Greg Speirs. Hear the audio interview from the artist himself: Audio Interview at www.gregspeirs.com
The shirts seen by the world on the podium in the 1992 Olympics, became a sought after collectible and started selling. The artist then acquired the status as the major sponsor of the team by donating 100% of his profits generated from the sales of the famous t-shirts which were sold through a charitable organization to fund the Lithuanian Olympic basketball team beyond the 1992 season to 1996 Olympics and Lithuanian children’s charities. Recent news reports state millions were given to Lithuania from sales of the T-Shirts, which featured the artist’s Slam Dunking Skeleton Trademark. The reports of millions of dollars given to charity generated from Slam Dunking Skeleton T-shirts were given on behalf of the artist, the creator and licensor of the trademark. His donation eclipsed all of the initial funding by the big names and others. The public is now slowly discovering these previously unknown facts about the story. Other Dream Team movie bio: http://www.imdb.com/name/nm3998173 The shirts have been reissued & are available at:: www.skullman.com
About Greg Speirs: He has created skeleton artwork for over 40 years and is named to Who’s Who in America and Who’s Who in the World. The former 1970′s Grooves Music Magazine Art Director was also commissioned by Prince Albert of Monaco to create the art for the Princes’ Monaco Olympic Bobsled Team sleds in 1995 for the World Cup Bobsled Championships, 1995-1997, and the 1998 Nagano Winter Olympics. His Slam-Dunking Skullman and dedication to the 1992 Lithuanian Olympic Basketball Team was enshrined in the Basketball Hall of Fame on Dec. 07, 1993. His 1970′s works include the Max Damian rock band’s “Take it to the Max” album cover with legendary record producer Artie Kornfeld of Woodstock fame. Official website:www.gregspeirs.com Facebook: www.facebook.com/iamskullman YouTube video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a9ITlbG55ug Twitter: http://twitter.com/#!/GregSpeirs Audio Interview