Anyone who was in San Francisco in November, 2013 remembers the day that the entire city united to support the dream of one courageous boy. Five-year-old Miles Scott was battling lymphoblastic leukemia and had just finished his last treatment when the Make-A-Wish Foundation granted him his biggest wish ever – to be Batman. This is how #SFBatkid was born.
As myWebRoom is based in San Francisco, everyone here at the office remembers the event well. We wanted to do something to help people relive the emotion of that day and to do our part to promote the upcoming documentary that tells the feel-good story, #BatkidBegins. We knew that the best way to help would be to do what we do best: create a room.
We are excited to announce our new #BatkidBegins Room! We tried to imagine what Miles would think was cool and designed a pretty awesome Bat-loft. There’s even a sweet Batkid-mobile and a view of the Golden Gate bridge outside of the window.
We wanted to give viewers a single hub to go to for every article, video, and photo of Batkid. The goal was for people to be able to follow every step of the day from within the room.
There was a lot of coverage that took place both around the event and the documentary, and we wanted to showcase it all in a way that was unique.
Each of the objects in the room is packed full of content that chronicles Miles’ heartwarming journey. Simply click on various pieces of furniture and decor to unlock articles, videos, maps, tweets, and more.
After seeing #BatkidBegins, it became clear that the buzz around #SFBatkid started about a month before Batkid Day. As the Make-A-Wish Foundation started to bring Miles’ dream to life, it became clear that this was no ordinary production.
What was originally supposed to staff of 200 or so volunteers quickly grew into an international phenomenon. Thousands of people – including many of the myWebRoom Roommates – lined the streets of San Francisco with signs to cheer on Miles and truly transformed the city by the bay into Gotham City.
The San Francisco Greater Bay Area chapter of the Make-A-Wish foundation, in conjunction with local marketing teams, started spreading word of the event through social media sites like Twitter and Facebook.
Thousands of people took to social media to support the cause, including every actor who has ever played Batman. Images of Batkid on Twitter and Instagram were viewed an estimated 120,439,533 times. The projected number of people who saw a retweeted Batkid tweet totaled about 1.7 billion.
One thing is for sure, this day surpassed even Miles’ wildest imagination. He rode around in the Batmobile with Batman himself, faced several supervillains, rescued The San Francisco Giants’ mascot, Lou Seal, from The Penguin and even received a personal message from President Barack Obama.
At the end of his adventures, Batkid stopped off at the steps of city hall in front of throngs of cheering fans.
He was met by the mayor of San Francisco and presented with the key to the city to thunderous applause from the people holding colorful signs thanking Batkid for his help. The streets around SF’s Civic Center were closed off due to the massive showing of support. It was an overwhelming sight.
After the dust had settled and everyone went home, bloggers and media outlets carried the story for a while longer, but an in-depth look at the behind-the-scenes tale of Miles’ dream still had to be told.
With director Dana Nachman at the helm, #BatkidBegins is hitting theaters June 26. The film aims to capture the indescribable emotion felt in San Francisco and across the world that day. Cameras covered every step of the the emotional journey, starting with Miles’ illness to the planning and production of his San Francisco adventure.
The movie shows the incredible support that the Batkid movement garnered as its scope became larger and larger. The efforts in manpower and donations to the cause inspired hope and a renewed faith in the compassion of humanity.
#BatkidBegins opened in theaters this past weekend, and expands to additional cities across the country on Friday, July 10th. It is available to see in limited release right now in New York, Los Angeles, and here at the Landmark Embarcadero and Sundance Kabuki theaters in San Francisco.
To help spread awareness for everyday heroism, join in to help spread the goodwill by striking your best Batkid pose on Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, and Instagram – and don’t forget to tag it with #BatkidPose! Here’s ours:
As Batkid fever spreads yet again, we want to have a hand in reigniting the powerful feelings of hope and compassion that San Francisco and the world felt the day Miles became the superhero that we all aspire to be.