Film industry unites to support vets with "Got Your 6" initiative

Alec Baldwin in the "Got Your 6" campaign YouTube


(CBS/AP) Hollywood's power players, who are often rivals when it comes to fighting for fair contracts, hot scripts and top talent, are uniting in their support for American veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan.

Movie studios, TV networks, talent agencies and the entertainment unions, together with a host of nonprofit groups, have created the "Got Your 6" initiative, a multipronged effort to support military veterans and their families.

"It's an opportunity for all of us," said Universal Studios chief Ron Meyer, who announced the campaign Wednesday. "I can't think of anything more important than supporting the troops that are coming back from active service."

More than a million veterans from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are expected to return to the U.S. over the next five years, said Chris Marvin, director of Got Your 6.

"Got your six" is military lingo, an expression of solidarity that means "I've got your back and I know you've got mine," Marvin said.

Through scripted story lines, celebrity public service announcements and employment and education outreach, Got Your 6 aims to ease veterans' return to civilian life by encouraging Americans to recognize them as valuable community leaders.

The effort was inspired by Michelle Obama's Joining Forces campaign and conceived with the support of the Clinton Global Initiative.

"The entertainment industry captures our imaginations, opens our eyes and touches our hearts, and I'm proud to work with them on our Joining Forces initiative," the first lady said in a statement Wednesday.

"By sharing the stories of strength and resilience that define our military families, we can motivate even more Americans to honor these courageous individuals in new ways."

Public service announcements featuring stars, including Tom Hanks, Alec Baldwin, Sarah Jessica Parker and Michael Douglas, will begin airing Thursday, and the industry's commitment to Got Your 6 is ongoing.

Among the elements of the campaign is a promise from Disney and Comcast to hire 1,000 veterans apiece.

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