Casey Neistat Introduces Hollywood to the New Makers in Samsung’s Oscars Campaign

YouTube star speaks for 'the rest of us'

The first Oscars ad was from Samsung, Wieden + Kennedy's latest effort. YouTube: Samsung
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Look out, Hollywood. There are millions of new kids in town, and they’re here to steal your thunder.

In case you missed it (or just want to revisit it), Sunday’s first Oscars spot was from Samsung, which used YouTube superstar Casey Neistat and creative agency of record Wieden + Kennedy to speak for a creative generation armed only with its own ambitions—and millions of handy Samsung smartphones. As Neistat put it, they’ve all been told they can’t. But they’re not hearing it.

Having Neistat deliver this anthem on Oscar night was particularly fitting given that he’s YouTube’s biggest star (or at least its biggest scandal-free star), and the Academy Awards are the most effective way to reach those who actually make movies—and ads—for a living.

The spot marks the beginning of an extended campaign building on the “Do what you can’t” tagline. The multichannel effort from Wieden + Kennedy will focus on empowering and inspiring a “new guild of creators” to reach their full potential.

In other words, people like Neistat and his followers will only grow more popular as they continue creating content. They might look like small potatoes now, but some day, they may well become the new Hollywood.

Will the effort help everyone forget all of Samsung’s recent explosions that weren’t created by a film crew? Maybe not. But for now, it feels like very smart positioning for the brand.

@PatrickCoffee Patrick Coffee is a senior editor for Adweek.