In a follow-up to the earlier NBA 2K14 spot which heralded Lebron James‘s first game cover, Zambezi returns with the official launch ad for the game featuring who most believe is the best in b-ball today. Yours truly hasn’t been much of a gamer since Mortal Kombat and Street Fighter 2 were in existence, but hell, we’re down to revisit the days when we were on fire in NBA Jam. Along with the spot, Zambezi curated an interview with the one and only Michael Jordan dubbed “Uncensored” in what perhaps the greatest basketball player ever actually goes against the grain and dubs Kobe Bryant the only one he probably couldn’t beat in the NBA today. Well, he did emulate his style to perfection after all, so maybe MJ’s on to something. Credits and the Jordan interview after the jump.
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At this point, Nike and AOR W+K are just showing off. Their latest spot, “Possibilities,” is a fat, splashy kick-off to the 25th anniversary of its ubiquitous slogan, “Just Do It.” These type of Nike ads have always had a mythical quality, compared to other sports brands – like certain BBDO Foot Locker commercials – that are solid and funny. Nike is serious. W+K Portland is serious. Nike, Inc. is set to earn $25 billion in revenue this year, meaning we must be serious, too, when it comes to our purchases.
Being serious does not preclude Nike from a certain playfulness if you look hard enough. For “Possibilities,” the lightness comes from some Bradley Cooper voiceover that makes the viewer want to just do it, even though said viewer knows he/she can’t do it as well as professional athletes. That’s where stars like footballer Gerard Piqué and basketballer LeBron James come in, cameos that are almost taking the money out of your wallet before you know it.
For LeBron, the unofficial king of the summer, Nike has been creatively pumping out his spots for a few years now. This one may be a joint venture, but he subtly dominates the end with some clever winking done in the form of a fake dunk content. LeBron has never entered the NBA dunk contest. Maybe this is a hint for 2014? Or maybe it’s just smart marketing? Plenty of possibilities to choose from.
Credits after the jump.
Hot Sauce. Skip to My Lou. Main Event. Kevin. The park league nickname has always been a valued tradition in the realm of streetball, meaningful monikers passed down from the basketball gods that can become legend, a la Dr. J or Pee Wee Kirkland. Kevin Durant, for all of his NBA greatness, has yet to merge his skills with an equally skillful nickname. Yes, there’s KD and the Durantula (and perhaps the best one via Jalen Rose, who resurrected the name Iceberg Slim), but it just doesn’t feel right yet.
For the latest Nike effort from W+K Portland, which was created in partnership with Foot Locker, the agency decided to take Durant’s lack of nicknameness and build an ad around it. The sixty-second spot, which features comedian Hannibal Buress as MC, is the coming-out party for Kevin “Kevin” Durant. Buress runs through pre-game introductions and calls out intricate nicknames for random guys like Don Juan Have a Picnic by the Pond, but when he gets to Durant, the crowd goes silent. Kevin Kevin: It’s funny because it’s true. Credits after the jump.
After their amusing spot featuring a basketball player juggling a couple of extra balls, Boost Mobile and 180LA are back together once again, this time emphasizing the savings Boost customers can get. In three short videos, we see various stealing scenarios: a man on the subway gets pickpocketed, a city guy leaps over fences to evade a mugger, a woman has her purse snatched on the sidewalk. But by the end of each ad, the victim has money handed back to them, showing that “Boost Mobile puts cash back in your pocket, literally.”
It’s a good concept, and the little song that shifts each scene into celebration coupled with the actors’ yay-I’m-richer-than-I-thought smiles makes these spots sweet. I only wish they could have cast at least one white thief. Sure, they’re all good guys in the end, but these spots still reinforce tired racial stereotypes. We can do better.
Credits and the rest of the videos after the jump.
-W+K Portland, Nike Basketball and Kevin Durant tell us why “Summer Is Serious” (above, credits after the jump).
-Speaking of Nike and basketball, the corporate giant continues its expansion of Converse stores, this time in San Francisco. link
-Google-owned Motorola Mobility has unveiled its new logo. link
-WPP-owned MediaCom USA has welcomed Starcom alum Jose Bello as managing partner, head of multicultural as well as former Clear Channel exec Khartoon Ohan as its new managing director/chief growth officer. link
Nearly three months after 72andSunny introduced us to “The Replacer”–aka Fargo baddie Peter Stormare–in its campaign for Activision’s Call of Duty: Black Ops II – Revolution trailer, the agency has brought back the character, now with sidekick JB Smoove in tow, for its Black Ops II – Uprising promo. Jesus, how many entries are in this franchise? Anyhow, the newly formed dynamic duo embarks on several replacing adventures from serving as weatherman to fixing cable, with Stormare being his usual, somewhat menacing self and Smoove giving us the fast-talking delivery that we first came to know and love in Curb Your Enthusiasm.
We’re not sure what the budget is here, but as the Black Ops franchise expands, so do seem the timeframe and scope of the clips promoting it. But, if you have the patience for it (it is lunchtime on the East Coast, after all), don’t let us stop you from taking in this slightly entertaining, slightly grating clip. Credits after the jump.
Like a less-slick, self-assured version of Harvey Keitel‘s “The Wolf” from Pulp Fiction, actor Peter Stormare, who you might remember from playing Steve Buscemi‘s even sleazier partner-in-crime in Fargo or to a lesser extent, “Slippery Pete” on Seinfeld, stars as “The Replacer” in 72andSunny’s latest lengthy effort for Activision. This time, agency and client team up to promote the latter’s Call of Duty: Black Ops II – Revolution, which will come equipped with new multiplayer apps, a new weapon and even a zombie mode to play undead.
In the two-and-a-half minute clip above, we find that “The Replacer” is actually a way more charitable character than Wolf, lending his services to a variety of gamers, whether a frustrated, domesticated type, an expecting parent, a guy on a blind date, a landscaper or even a zoo cleaner. The intensity of previous Call of Duty clips has supplanted by comedy, and we kinda welcome the change of pace. And plus, we have a soft spot for Stormare, a man who’s played bit/supporting roles in more movies than we can count. Credits after the jump.
Following the reveal trailer that aired during last night’s NBA playoffs and showed actual game play, Activision has now unveiled the full-length, two-minute documentary for Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 which was created by The Ant Farm and 72andSunny. Shot in Washington D.C. and featuring an appearance from none other than good ol’ Ollie North, the online film dramatically details the weapons of the future and looks realistic and grim enough to have us believe we’ll be wandering the desolate road with Viggo Mortensen and his son in the coming years. Check out credits if so inclined after the jump.
During last night’s broadcast of AMC’s The Walking Dead, Electronic Arts debuted the above spot from DraftFCB SF for the new title coming to stores March 6, Mass Effect 3. Before you fret, realize that the spot aired after the Academy Awards ended, and many who felt like remaining on the couch (me included) flipped over just in time to see it.
Since debuting yesterday, the emotional spot depicting the end of the world, an alien invasion, and the battle for humanity’s survival has already chalked up more than 75,000 views on YouTube. Filmed over six days in Prague, “Fight for Everything” is, in a word, cinematic, so much so that it’s initially quite difficult to tell what exactly the spot is advertising. But it succeeds where it aims to, making ME:3 look enticing to gamers and non-gamers alike. Sure, it’s a little bit Halo and a little bit Star Wars, but that doesn’t make images of people running for their lives any less moving.
Also, since the Vancouver hockey riots of 2011, it’s hard to imagine a scene of mass chaos that doesn’t include two young people making out. Maybe that’s the “better with Kinect” feature Electronic Arts is hinting at. Credits after the jump.