Spec

Makers of the Famous ‘Dear Brother’ Johnnie Walker Spec Ad Just Made a Volvo Ad to Die For

Death becomes them. Filmmakers Daniel Titz and Dorian Lebherz came to prominence last year with the breathtaking "Dear Brother" spec ad for Johnnie Walker. That spot, with 7 million views across all platforms, put an evocative spin on the concepts on brotherly love, freedom and the ties that bind this world to the next. Now, the creative duo, students at the Film Academy of Baden-Württemberg in Germany, return with another stylish meditation on matters of life and death. Unlike their Johnnie Walker ad, with its ethereal, poetic vibe, this new spot traffics in stylish black humor to play up the safety advantages of Volvo's Autonomous Driving system.

Tesla Electrifies a Charred World in Automaker’s Latest Striking Fan-Made Ad

The breathless Tesla spec ad parade continues. In 2014, there was the car-as-kid's-spaceship spot, made by fans. Last year, we learned that Teslas are actually made of fireflies, in another video created independently from the brand. And now, a new team of filmmakers—again, working on their own—has cast the electric auto company as a hero riding into a bleak, colorless, oil-soaked Dust Bowl dystopia.

Is This Breathtaking Spec Ad for Johnnie Walker the Best Student Work Ever?

Talk about being your brother's keeper. This haunting Johnnie Walker spec ad from Germany explores that concept in highly memorable fashion—delivering one of the most potent punch lines of the year.

It’s Time for Us All to Ditch Spec Creative Pitches

Five years ago, we made an unconventional decision at Zulu Alpha Kilo. Despite being a startup with only a few clients at the time, we started saying no to free speculative creative work in new business pitches.

Watch People in Other Industries React Hilariously to Being Asked for Free Spec Work

People in other industries don't provide their would-be clients with "spec work" for free. That would be asinine. So, why do advertising agencies continue to do it?

This Astonishing Fan-Made Tesla Ad Is All CGI, Yet It Couldn’t Look More Beautifully Real

Tesla marketing, it seems, could live entirely off spec ads and do just fine.

This Fake ‘Tide to Go’ Ad Perfectly Spoofs Lingering Opposition to Gay Marriage

Tide has already made one commercial featuring a gay couple—it's been airing in Canada, as Procter & Gamble considers bringing it to the U.S.. And now, an ad for Tide to Go about gay marriage has gone viral, garnering over 400,000 views on Facebook. But the spot is actually spec work from Tiny Giant director Mark Nickelsburg. 

Bad Day on Social Media? Ads for High-Alcohol Beer Suggest Drowning Your Sorrows

No one inspires sympathy quite like a guy who spots his girlfriend on Tinder while shopping around on the the dating app himself.

Watch Out, New Hamburglar, Old Hamburglar Is Out of Jail and on the Road Again

If you're underwhelmed by the new Hamburglar's antics so far—and are pining for the original criminal himself—you're in luck, thanks to a spec campaign from production company Whiskey Tongue.

This Gay-Themed Taco Bell Ad Isn’t Real, but Taco Bell Digs It Anyway

It's a sign of the times that some freelance directors can make a gay-themed spec ad for a major brand, and that brand not only doesn't go ballistic and have it taken off YouTube—it goes on the record saying it rather enjoyed it. The Merkin Bros. filmed the spot below, which has gotten a couple hundred thousand YouTube views since mid-December. The title says it's a "leaked" ad, though of course it's clearly spec—the production values, particularly the sound, aren't on the same level as a real Taco Bell ad. And while the gay theme seems a bit forced, the ad is likable enough.