We recently took notice of Spike Jonze’s short film for Absolut vodka I’m Here”, which premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in January. We were since able to speak with We Are Social, a UK-based conversation and social media agency that worked with Absolut on the campaign, to better understand how and why the collaboration came together.
According to We Are Social, Jonze was given complete artistic freedom for the project, which is certainly not about product placement (although the bottle shape slips in at one point), but more about creating a meaningful collaboration that will position ABSOLUT where it sees itself – within the creative and art communities that is has long supported. ABSOLUT recognized consumers are pretty tired of having brands shout at them. Rather than utilising a traditional print or TV ad campaign, they approached Jonze to create a short film based loosely on their brand ideals, their creative history and where they see themselves in the future.
The end result is a robot love story celebrating a life enriched by creativity. Set in contemporary L.A. in a not so distant future where humans and robots live and love together, the film centers around a male robot librarian that lives a solitary, methodical life — devoid of creativity, joy and passion – until he meets an adventurous and free spirited female robot. The film stars British actor Andrew Garfield (Boy A, The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus, The Social Network) and Sienna Guillory.
While short film collaborations aren’t new as a form of branded entertainment marketing, BMW and Honda have launched a series of these in the past to embody and strengthen particular brand attributes, “I’m Here” elevates the concept of branded entertainment by treating it as a true short film and stand-alone art form, vs. relegating to solely living on a website or on You Tube. The film first premiered at Sundance on January 21st, and will continue its showcase at various film festivals in the UK and Europe. In March the 35min short will go live on http://www.imheremovie.com/ for all to enjoy for free. In the meantime, a book showcasing photography and stills from the film is also available online from Swiss publisher Nieves.