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My Most Popular LinkedIn Posts in March and April 2023

ACES Engagement: The featured commercials in the globally popular LinkedIn posts are by Advertising Agencies; Leo Burnett Chicago; Saatchi & Saatchi London; Blitzworks London; Johannes Leonardo New York; Wirz BBDO Zurich; and Wieden+Kennedy London.

1. Samsung Gear VR, Ostrich

Advertising Agency: Leo Burnett, Chicago, USA

Production Company: MJZ, Los Angeles, California, USA

Filmed in South Africa’s Ostrich farming region in the Western Cape Province, known as the ‘Little Karoo’, the ‘Samsung Gear VR’ commercial, directed by filmmaker Matthijs Van Heijningen, and featuring Elton John’s ‘Rocket Man’ as the soundtrack, is regarded by many industry professionals as one of the best ever to be made for Samsung.

The entertaining ‘Do What You Can’t’ scenario, won 2 Bronze, 2 Silver and 3 Gold Cannes lions in the film craft category for best direction, visual effects and animation.

At the 2018 Art Directors Club of New York (ADC) awards show, Leo Burnett and MJZ took home three top prizes for ‘Samsung Gear VR, Ostrich’.

The awards are namely; a Gold Cube in the Online/Mobile Video category, a Gold Cube for Craft in Video/Cinematography, and a Gold Cube for Experiential Design.

The MPC’s team of animators and compositors, in Los Angeles, London, Paris and Bangalore, was led by the LA studio’s Creative Director, Michael Gregory, and supervised by the London studio’s Creative Director, Diarmid Harrison-Murray.

2. Rekorderlig Premium Cider, Silver Skaters

Advertising Agency; Saatchi & Saatchi, London, UK

Production Company: Biscuit Filmworks, London, UK

Filmed on the frozen Torneträsk lake in Lapland, Sweden, and directed by renowned filmmaker Andreas Nilsson, the distinctive Rekorderlig commercial features two skating brothers Henrik and Anders and their coach/singer Jarmo.

The hauntingly ethereal soundtrack, by Swedish composer Jon Henrik Fjällgren’s “The Reindeer Herder’s Jiok”, based on the ancient and haunting ‘kulning’ herding call, which is also a song, is central to the unique mood and atmospheric tone of the commercial that won a D&AD Award for Film Advertising Crafts Use of Music.

Henrik, Anders, and Jarmo, working in perfect synch, make their complex routine seems effortless and ‘beautifully Swedish’.

3. Coca-Cola, Masterpiece

Advertising Agency: Blitzworks, London, UK

Production Company: Academy Films, London, UK

Post Production Studio: Heads Up Production, London, UK

VFX Studio: Electric Theatre Collective, London, UK

Directed by filmmaker Henry Scholfield, Coca-Cola’s ‘Masterpiece’ is a fun special effects extravaganza, of art works coming to life in a museum, that range from Andy Warhol’s 1962 Coca-Cola bottle pop-art, to classic masterpieces, such as “The Shipwreck” by JMW Turner, “The Scream” by Edvard Munch, Vincent Van Gogh’s “Bedroom in Arles”, and “The Girl with a Pearl Earring” by Johannes Vermeer.

4. Adidas Originals, Original Is Never Finished

Advertising Agency: Johannes Leonardo, New York, USA

Production Companies: RSA Film Los Angeles, California, USA, and Egg Films, Cape Town, South Africa

Creative Director Wes Phelan insightfully noted that the past empowers the future. “We wanted the campaign to reflect the rich past of all creative spheres: music, art, film and sport.”

Starting with the music, we intentionally chose a track that had been done multiple times before to prove our point, that original is never finished.”

“The song provides the narrative thread that connects the different role players and the motivation of their creative drive.”

The featured commercial was filmed in various locations throughout Europe and Africa, by South African filmmaker and director Terence Neale. The image disruptions and definition fluctuations are intentional and part of the desired ‘actuality’ look and feel he wanted to create.

The mix of contemporary creative talents featured are: Snoop Dogg, hip-hop artist Stormzy, basketball star Abdul-Jabbar, and artist Petra Collins’ re-imagining of Botticelli’s ‘Birth of Venus’, all set to the ‘MyWay Remix’ soundtracks by Human Music Production Studios, Franklin, Tennessee, of the Frank Sinatra hit, written and composed for him by Billy Joel.

’Original Is Never Finished’, and subsequent commercials for Adidas directed by Terence Neal, garnered a trove of International Advertising Awards that included a 2017 Cannes Lions Music Entertainment Grand Prix, and a 2018 Clio Sport Grand Prix in Film.

5. Switzerland Tourism, You’re Never On The Wrong Train in Switzerland

Advertising Agency: Wirz BBDO, Zurich, Switzerland

Film Producer: Trevor Noha

Switzerland Tourism’s new worldwide campaign commercial, to promote Swiss Rail’s ‘Grand Tour of Switzerland’, features Rodger Federer and Trevor Noah preparing for a film production.

Directed by Academy Award winning filmmaker Tom Hooper, the amusing scenario centres on the two stars finding themselves on the wrong train headed for Interlaken, without money and tickets.

How they manage theIr predicament is superbly scripted and entertainingly enacted, with great wit, charm, and engaging broad smiles.

6. Leffe Abbey Beer, Silence Is Golden

Advertising Agency: Wieden+Kennedy, London, UK

Production Company: MJZ, London, UK

Wieden+Kennedy London’s, Leffe advertising campaign for Europe, avoids laddish bar-counter chatter, in lieu of creating deeper connections.   

Directed by filmmaker Gary Freedman, the scenario centres on two life-long friends, who meet in a pub over a couple of pints of Leffe. They know each other so well, that they can instinctively read each others minds, and converse telepathically in silent contemplation.

The excellently directed performances of the two friends, with subtitles of their quiet conversation, are beguilingly nuanced and amusing to behold.

The abbey of Leffe, on the river Meuse, in the province of Namur in southern Belgium, started brewing ale in 1240. Using knowledge passed on from one generation of monks to the next, they perpetuated the production of a uniquely smooth blond ale, with a fruity taste and high alcohol content, to the present day.

With a phenomenal 2000 beer varieties, of different fermentation methods, Belgian beer is listed as a World Heritage property. And like all the other 400 plus established Belgium beer brands, Leffe has its own registered trademark glass, that has been specifically crafted for a distinctive presentation of optimal drinking enjoyment.