My Favourite Andreas Nilsson Commercials
This is another in the ACES series of featuring commercial filmmakers and directors that I admire for their dedicated craftsmanship in bringing creative concepts and storylines to filmic life that enthrall viewers and motivate well-earned accolades from the Advertising Communications industry.
Swedish Film Director Andreas Nilsson studied painting and sculpture before turning his hand to animation, set designs for the Royal Theatre in Stocholm, set designs for live musical acts and music videos, and eventually to filmmaking and commercial direction.
His filmmaking skills have been widely acclaimed and in 2016 he won the Directors Guild of America (DGA) award for Outstanding Achievement in Commercial Direction.
1. Reebok Classic Club C Sneakers, Nails
Advertising Agency: Venables Bell & Partners, San Francisco, California, USA
Andreas Nilson directed this amusingly surreal commercial staring Cardi B as part of Reebock’s ‘Sport The Unexpected campaign.
American rapper, singer, songwriter, actress, and television personality Cardi B, from The Bronx, New York City, is also famous for her trend-setting ‘nail art’ that has become part of her trademark.
Cardi B is filmed talking to a friend in a hair salon about her boy troubles when her undone shoelaces draws everyones’ attention. Using her magical ‘nail art’, she calmly ‘sports the unexpected to fix the problem, and then continues with her ‘nailed it’ story.
2. Volvo Trucks, The Epic Split
Advertising Agency: Forsman & Bodenfors, Sweden
The ‘Epic Split’ commercial for the launch of Volvo Truck’s new dynamic steering system took the Internet by storm.
The film stars Belgian martial-arts expert and actor Jean-Claude Van Damme, performing a live-test demonstration that motivated 86 million views on YouTube.
The resonant soundtrack of Enja’s ‘Only Time Will Tell’, adds an evocative and emotive aspect to a truck commercial that is unexpected and very effective.
Many communication industry awards followed. ‘Epic Split’ was the most awarded viral commercial of 2014 and Andreas Nilsson was named as the year’s most-awarded director worldwide.
Other awards included a Black Pencil from D&AD, Best of Show at The One Show, a Cannes Lions Grand Prix for Cyber and Film, a second Cannes Lion Grand Prix for Creative Effectiveness and a Film Grand Prix at the Eurobest awards in Helsinki, Finland.
3. Toyota Tacoma, Tough as Chuck
Advertsing Agency: Saatchi & Saatchi, Los Angeles, USA
Not surprisingly, Andreas Nilsson was the Agency’s preferred choice for directing a tongue-in cheek scenario staring the other famous martial- arts tough guy, Chuck Norris of whom it is jokingly said can strangle an opponent with a cordless phone.
The commercial amusingly intimates that Chuck’s mere signature is enough to imbue a Tacoma pickup truck with his ‘kick- butt’ power.
4. Jordan CP3.VI, Cut Through LA
Advertising Agency: Wieden+Kennedy, New York, USA
Andreas Nillson used his set designer skills to masterful effect in directing this Nike Brand Activation for the Jordan CP3.VI sports shoe worn by Chris Paul, a two time Olympic Gold medalist basketball player.
Staged and filmed at Venice Beach, California, 40 actors were posed in ‘freeze-frame’ positions. The human chain of basketball players were dressed to look like Paul and each one represented a frozen action of his famed court moves.
5. Foot Locker, We See Things Differently
Advertising Agency: BBDO, New York, USA
Andreas Nilsson directed this Foot Locker commercial for airing during the US National Basketball Association’s celebratory all-star weekend.
The commercial features NBA star Lance Stephenson, famed Sneaker Designer Jerry Lorenzo, and an imaginative filmic depiction of what an epic basketball ‘dunk’ looks like through a ‘sneakerhead’s’ eyes.
6. Stella Artois, The Pockets
Advertising Agency: Mother, New York, USA
Andreas Nilsson directed ‘The Pockets’ commercial for the global marketing launch of the new Srella Artois selling line ‘Joie de Bière’ which is a clever play on the French phrase ‘Joie de Vivre’.
Filmed on location in the birthplace of Stella Artois in the Belgium town of Leuven in Dutch, and Louvain in French, the commercial is a fun encouragement to take a break from obsessive cellphone preoccupations to appreciate the joy of a truly good beer.
Part of the Stella Artois integrated campaign strategy is to promote an extra ‘happy hour’ as a ‘Don’t Rush Hour’ at selected bars and establishments’.
7. Rekorderlig Swedish Premium Cider, Silver Skaters
Advertising Agency; Saatchi & Saatchi, London
Saatchi & Saatchi engaged Andreas Nilsson to direct a commercial that would be quintessentially Swedish in character.
Jon Henrik Fjällgren’s Swedish ‘The Reindeer Herder’s Joik’ was chosen for the soundtrack for its mystical resonance and it is central to the unique mood and atmospheric tone of the commercial.
His composition is based on the ancient and haunting ‘kulning’ herding call, which is also a song.
Set on the frozen Torneträsk lake in Lapland, Sweden, the story centres on two skating brothers Henrik and Anders and their coach/singer Jarmo.
Their quirky routine is complex, but with all three men working together in synch, they create a sequence that seems effortless and ‘beautiffully Swedish’.
The commercial won a D&AD Award for Film Advertising Crafts / Use of Music for Film Advertising.
8. Bosch Smart Home Solutions, Live like a Bosch
Advertising Agency: Jung von Matt, Hamberg, Germany
Brand advertising for product ranges are always a creative challenge to garner viewer interest by going beyond mere brand information to brand affinity by answering the question of ‘what’s in for me?’
Andreas Nilsson’s skillful direction sustains viewer interest with this amusing, fast-paced commercial choreographed to a remake of the song ‘like a Boss’.