Vanessa Bryant said she got emotional as she came face-to-face with the image of her late husband Kobe Bryant and daughter Gianna in a collaboration with the NFL that she teased on Instagram on Wednesday.
Ahead of Super Bowl LVI, Vanessa, 39, promoted the game’s home of Los Angeles for a special titled This Is LA, which is set to premiere the morning of the big game.
She posed ahead of the game — which will feature the LA Rams defending their turf from the Cincinnati Bengals — in a gorgeous classic car parked in front of a touching mural devoted to Kobe and Gianna, who were killed in a tragic helicopter crash in January 2020.
Vanessa took to her Instagram page to give her 15.3 million Instagram fans and followers a glimpse at what they can expect from her scenes in the video.
‘A special collaboration with @NFL for #SBLVI to show off the city of angels,’ she wrote alongside two photos of herself striking some poses in a slick car.
Sitting in the driver’s seat, the Los Angeles native stared directly into the camera in the first image, and then was seemingly seen getting some direction for the shoot in the second photo.
She ended the caption by sharing: ‘#ThisIsLA debuts Super Bowl Sunday on @NFLGameDay Morning at 9am ET on @NFLNetwork,’ along with the hashtags ‘#CaliGirl #QueenMamba #Mambacita #MambaForever’
In a follow-up to the first post, Vanessa shared a picture of herself in the driver’s seat, but this time she flashed a slight smile for the camera while making a heartbreaking confession in the caption.
‘I couldn’t look at the mural next to me until we wrapped,’ she shared, adding, ‘This city is special to me for so many reasons. It’s an honor to be a part of #ThisIsLA.’
For her third post, she looked away from the camera and to her right, almost as if she was distracted, with a clapperboard in view with the captions: ‘#ThisIsLA #QueenMamba #Mambacita #Mamba Forever.’
The #ThisIsLA hashtag has accumulated a slew of photos and videos, including a series of snaps posted by the artist Dreko, who goes by the handle Downtownmac.
All three pictures give a clear view of the mural, which shows Kobe giving Gianna a kiss on the side of her head as she holds on tight to a basketball. Both father and daughter are decked out in Laker gold.
When Vanessa stepped out of the vehicle during the shoot, she revealed the all-black ensemble she was wearing, complete with a long duster that hugged her curves.
‘God Bless all our Angels,’ it read in the caption, along with the hashtag #thisisla, a prayer emoji and eight white heart emojis, seemingly in tribute to KOBE’S uniform number eight, which he wore from the 1996–1997 season until the 2005–2006 season.
Kobe spent his 20-year career with the Lakers, which resulted in five NBA championships, among the other accolades and awards he gathered along the way.
He and Gianna ‘Gigi’ Bryant were among nine people killed when the helicopter they were riding in crashed into the hills of Calabasas, near Los Angeles, back in January 2020.