Social Status’s James Whitner Set To Release Nike Dunk Free Lunch With Deeper Meaning


Through Chase whitney

September 6, 2021

Social Status, the sneaker and streetwear retailer founded by James Whitner is releasing a Nike Dunk sneaker collaboration called “Free Lunch” on September 10.

Originally slated for September 4th, the brown “Chocolate Milk” edition of the innovated Whitner-designed Nike Dunk will now be released on September 10 at 11:00 am EST with a pink “Strawberry Milk” pair due out on September 18th. SNKRS and Nike are expected to have the shoes at a later date and the original delivery will be on the Social Status website and in stores.

To accompany the sneakers, Social Status has also released a short film titled Free meal. Directed by The Turner Brothers and shot by Tyler Clark, the six-minute film (shot in Whitner’s childhood home and bedroom) gives a light look at how members of a community care for one another .

“There is this idea that scammers are trying to lure young people into [to crime] and in many cases, this is not true. In some cases it is, but in most cases scammers are trying to help young people not to be them. They try to help them make better decisions so they can end up in a better place, ”Whitner said in his interview with Complex.

This feeling is often lost when communities like those in Free meal are depicted in media elements, but Whitner made it a focal point of the film, with the character OG Hustle being the one who provides the kids with their new Dunks.

“The Turner Brothers invented the characters. I just told the story… It’s a journey through your projects. And it also speaks of those relationships, doesn’t it. And I think a key relationship in any project is that of young people and scammers, ”Whitner said. Complex.

For many, like LeBron James, the characters in the film reminded him of the friends he had made and the experiences he had had participating in similar programs across the country.

Whitner, from Pittsburgh, was inspired to focus his Nike Social Status collaboration on free meal programs because he himself remembers being served meals as part of the federal initiative created. to help underserved children who are growing up. In the interview with Complex, he explained in detail where the idea came from:

“For Social Status, we always try to really focus on the core kid who loves streetwear and sneaker culture. And I was just thinking… we have to talk all day. And that’s when the idea of ​​the free lunch was born. Because that’s how you started your day. It wasn’t like you woke up and had breakfast. The free lunch was breakfast and lunch. So it was less about the place and more about the experience.

This is not the first time that status in Charlotte has been featured in national media. While on the campaign trail in 2020, current Vice President Kamala Harris stopped by the Plaza Midwood store to record an episode of Purchase of sneakers with Complex and discuss Whitner’s collaboration with Converse and Nina Chanel Abney for the HBCU-backed sneakers.

He moved to Charlotte after a life-changing incident prompted him to pursue his dream of opening a streetwear store, and has since strengthened the brand of status opening locations in Atlanta, Houston, Pittsburgh, North Carolina and Tampa wearing brands like COMME des GARCONS, Billionaire Boys Club and Nike Sportswear.

In addition to this Social Status collaboration with Nike, Whitner’s clothing store, In my way, released an Air Jordan 3 sneaker “Raised by Women” accompanied by a short film back in April. An Air Jordan 1 High collaboration in snakeskin is also set to release this holiday season.

Nike Dunk “Free Lunch” social status in “Chocolate Milk” and “Strawberry Milk”. Courtesy of Social Status

Those looking to purchase a pair of Nike Dunks with “Free Lunch” status can make an appointment to participate in the in-store draw at 1519 Central Avenue in Plaza Midwood (all entries before the original release postponed to September 4 remain valid). The branded box comes with a second pair of different colored laces and a folded “Status School District Lunch Menu” inside.

Nike Dunk “Free Lunch” social status shoebox. Courtesy of Social Status

“Every significant shoe drop has a strong story and a product that connects to that story,” added Whitner in her interview with Complex. “If we’ve done our job, people will be talking about ‘Free Lunch Dunk’ in 20 years.”

Check out more photos of the Nike Free Lunch Social Status Dunks. Follow updates on the release and participate in the in-store raffle.

Courtesy of Social Status
Courtesy of Social Status
“Status School District Lunch Menu” folded inside the Nike Dunks “Free Lunch”. Courtesy of Social Status
Meal tray inside the Nike Dunk “Free Lunch” Social Status shoebox. Courtesy of Social Status
Lace pouch for Social Status “Free Lunch” Nike Dunk. Courtesy of Social Status

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