Most young creatives don’t get a taste of fame until they’ve worked their way up the agency ladder or built a legion of solid connections in the industry.
The filmmaking duo known as Dorian & Daniel, however, reached global acclaim before they even had a client.
In 2015, German film students Dorian Lebherz and Daniel Titz created a 90-second spec ad for Johnnie Walker called “Dear Brother.” Powerful and surprising, it beautifully told the story of the connection between two siblings. The spot won gold in the Clio Awards’ student film category in 2016.
A year later, they followed up with another spec masterpiece, this time using a darkly humorous concept to play up Volvo’s safety features.
They’ve taken on several paying projects since then, and their newest is for one of the biggest brands out there: Mercedes.
“Mercedes approached us directly and asked us if we wanted to write a concept for the MBUX, their new infotainment system,” Lebherz tells Adweek. “When we all sat together, we pretty quickly agreed that it should be an emotional narrative. We have always wanted to shoot some kind of love story.”
While “Endless Love” might be the duo’s first foray into romance, it still highlights their consistent, somewhat ethereal aesthetic anchored in a palette of grays.
The premise of the spot came from the theme of how the technology connects people, across generations and miles.
“We felt this was the right moment to create a short film with the product subtly woven into an emotional story,” Titz says. “The MBUX system itself is all about being connected in many ways. So we wrote a story about two people with a very strong connection that lasted even in times when both of them were separated.”
The filmmakers have also done client work for Cafe Royal, Tiger beer, Migros, Tipico, Nivea and Ancestry.
You can watch their earlier spec spots below, followed by the credits for the new Mercedes work.
Written & Directed by Dorian & Daniel
DOP – Jan David Günther
Nicholas – Oliver Savile
Joseph – Brian Jackson
Annie – Sarah Willey
Young Joseph – Jordan Alexander
Young Annie – Isabell Röden
Production Company: Element E
Executive Producer – Patrick Volm-Dettenbach
Producer – Karina Kirschner
Production Assistant – Mira Fellner
Casting- Ashton Hinkinson Casting
Music – 2wei Christian Vorländer / Simon Heeger
Postproduction – Electric Theatre
Nuke Lead – Dave Birkill
Nuke – Taran Spear
Nuke – Alberto Pizzocchero
DMP – Billy Stockwell
Post Producer – Matt Williams/Antonia Vlasto
Color Grading – Daniel de Vue @ A52
Color Producer – Jenny Bright
Color Assists – Tanner Hladek, Corey Martinez
Service Production – MTP Scotland
Producer: Maeve McMahon
Drone Pilot – Sam Short
Drone Cam Operator – Thomas Hogben
1st AC: David Garbi
2nd AC: Caroline Kiessling
Spark – Ross O’Brien
Sound/DIT – Stefan Fraberger
Styling/Make up – Annika Osterrieder
Styling/Make up – Lena Peifer-Weiß
Props – Steven Robertson
Driver Hero Car – Martin Blytheway
Precision Driver – Hugh Orr
Verantwortlich auf Mercedes Seite sind Boris Helms (Manager International Campaign) und Guiseppina Arena (Campaign Development / Creation), Kerstin Osterwald (Campaign Development / Creation), und Cordula Kiel ( MBD Digitales Marketing) .
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