If Nike’s goal was to beat themselves at their own game with this three minute World Cup spot, they’ve succeeded. This even bests their “Take it to the next level” spot (directed by Guy Ritchie), a young unknown player’s wild point-of-view ride of being plucked from a youth league and plonked into the big league.
Their latest commercial features some of the beautiful game’s superstars like Cristiano Ronaldo, Wayne Rooney, Fabio Cannavaro, and Landon Donovan in split second game flashpoints that alter the player’s fortunes. Entitled “Write the Future”, the story reveals some hilarious and outrageous ‘what if’ situations with the players and cameos by Kobe Bryant, Roger Federer, Homer Simpson, and Mexican actor Gael Garcia Bernal (“Babel”, “The Motorcycle Diaries”, “Amores Perros”).
Directed by Alejandro Innarritu (“Babel”, “21 Grams”, “Amores Perros”), this short film is brilliantly executed with some lightening fast cuts and dizzying camera work to give a fleeting glimpse of several scenarios. From a whole ward of babies named Wayne, to a new dance craze started by some fancy footwork on the field, to the fate of a nation decided by a single play and the hysteria surrounding whether it lives or crashes.
Although time and money are certainly factors with a spot like this, I love it when A-list directors moonlight doing commercials and use it as an opportunity to push the envelope, innovate, and inspire.