When we were kids, our default answer to the “what do you want to be when you grow up?” question was, of course, “astronaut.” This may have been because we didn’t realize at the time that “ninja” would soon become a legitimate job title, but everyone likes to fantasize about visiting outer space…even people who are ridiculously scared of heights.
Turns out we could have (almost) experienced the awesomeness of space travel without ever leaving the ground. Audi’s effort for Super Bowl 50 implies that all we really needed to do to get that thrill was drive a sedan along the California coast.
Here’s the extended cut; the :60 will air during the first quarter.
Yes, the retired-and-depressed Commander once went to the moon and back. But the Audi Audi R8 V10 plus can hit 205 MPH just like that, and it’s “the most powerful Audi in the fleet.”
This spot marks the car brand’s eighth appearance in the Bowl and the second time it has promoted the R8 following the 2008 Godfather parody launch campaign (also created by Venables). The release sort-of credits this model–which marked Audi’s entry into the luxury market–with helping the company set a sales record in 2015 “nearly five years ahead of schedule.”
The work is definitely more somber and sentimental than both that spot and VB&P’s last big-event campaign for Audi, an Emmys ad promoting the new plug-in hybrid via a quick overview of environmentally conscious West Coast lifestyle trends.
It’s also the first of what we assume will be a bunch of ads featuring the music of the Thin White Duke. From the release, emphasis ours: “‘The Commander’ tells the story of a retired astronaut who rediscovers his lust for life.”
But advertising already ruined that song forever.
CLIENT: Audi of America
SPOT NAME: Commander
AGENCY: Venables Bell & Partners
EXECUTIVE CREATIVE DIRECTOR: Will McGinness
SENIOR ART DIRECTOR: Rich North
COPYWRITER: Rus Chao, Paul Venables
DIRECTOR OF INTEGRATED PRODUCTION: Craig Allen
AGENCY EXECUTIVE PRODUCER: Mandi Holdorf
PRODUCTION COMPANY: MJZ
DIRECTOR: Craig Gillespie
DIRECTOR OF PHOTOGRAPHY: Masanobu Takayangi
EXECUTIVE PRODUCER: Emma Wilcockson
PRODUCER: Martha Davis
EDITING COMPANY: Final Cut Editorial
EDITOR: Rick Russell
COLORIST: CO 3 – Stefan Sonnenfeld
MUSIC COMPANY: Agoraphone
FEATURED SONG: “Starman” by David Bowie.
MUSIC SUPERVISOR: Dawn Sutter Madell
SOUND DESIGN: 740 Sound Design
EXECUTIVE PRODUCER: Scott Ganary
SOUND DESIGN PRODUCER: Jeff Martin
LEAD SOUND DESIGNER- Chris Pinkston , Rob Marshall
FINAL MIX : Formosa
MIX ENGINEER: John Bolen
V/FX: The Mill
VFX PRODUCER: Ben Sposato
VFX SUPERVISOR: Gareth Parr
HEAD OF ACCOUNT MANAGEMENT: David Corns
ACCOUNT DIRECTOR: Chris Bergen
ACCOUNT SUPERVISORS: Ally Humpherys, Alexis Lovett
ACCOUNT MANAGERS: Oliver Glenn, Faire Davidson
ASSISTANT ACCOUNT MANAGER: Bri Jones
PROJECT MANAGER: Talya Fisher