Obama and the production company ATTN: announced Friday they are launching a five-part video series that highlights some of the biggest themes from Obama's A Promised Land

By Sean Neumann
December 11, 2020 03:00 PM
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In an effort to reach younger audiences with his new book, President Barack Obama is bringing portions of it to Instagram with a new series.

Obama, 59, and the production company ATTN: announced Friday they are teaming up to launch a five-part video series that highlights some of the biggest themes from the 44th president’s new memoir, A Promised Land.

”In my new book, A Promised Land, I share the story of what inspired me to pursue public service and the ups and downs in my first few years of my presidency, but I wanted to share some of the most important moments with you,” Obama said in a Friday morning video launching the series.

“That's why I'm teaming up with ATTN: for a new series talking about some of the biggest moments that defined those years for me,” Obama said.

He will also be releasing Instagram Reels to pair with the series. In the first, posted Friday, Obama recites lyrics from Eminem’s 2002 hit “Lose Yourself” — which, Obama writes in his memoir, helped pump him up on the 2008 campaign trail.

Barack Obama

“When I needed inspiration on the presidential campaign, I often turned to music,” Obama said, reading a passage from his book. "It was that got my head in the right place." Not just Eminem but JAY-Z's "My 1st Song."

The former president's Instagram series is intended for a new audience. ATTN: co-founder Matthew Segal said in a press release that “A Promised Land will undoubtedly be one of the biggest presidential books in history, and we want to make sure that the stories and themes make their way to younger audiences.”

“We hope that these new interviews and creative Reels that ATTN: has made will bring the policies and lessons of the Obama presidency to the next generation,” Segal said.

From left: former President Barack Obama photographed for PEOPLE in Washington, D.C., on Nov. 17; his recent cover for PEOPLE.
| Credit: Shaniqwa Jarvis
Former President Barack Obama photographed for PEOPLE in Washington, D.C., on Nov. 17;
| Credit: Shaniqwa Jarvis

Obama released the first of a planned two-volume presidential memoir last month (and it was recently named one of PEOPLE’s top 10 books of 2020).

The first volume spans Obama’s initial years in the White House, opening up about key decisions he made while he was commander in chief and how the spotlight of the presidency strained his marriage to former First Lady Michelle Obama.

"I think we came out of it whole," President Obama recently told PEOPLE. "There were great joys in the White House. There was never a time where we didn't recognize what an extraordinary privilege it was to be there. Most importantly, our children emerged intact and they are wonderful, kind, thoughtful, creative — and not entitled — young women. So that's a big sigh of relief."

The former first lady, 56, similarly teamed up with ATTN: earlier this year to release her own IGTV series about the hurdles first-time college students face while living away from home for the first time.

ATTN: says their latest Obama series, with the former president, will total five episodes and will be released over the next two weeks. It's the company's fifth project with the Obamas, including three previous get-out-the-vote efforts in the 2020 general and 2018 midterm elections.

The company adds that President Obama will share additional "insights and backstories" from his two terms in office via Instagram Reels.

The five topics in the series include: Obama’s push to pass the Recovery Act; the influence of strong women on the former president’s life; his efforts in passing the Affordable Care Act; what it was like being the first Black family in the White House; and climate change.