Created to appeal to professionals between 23 and 30 years of age, the 90-second ad, which has been cut down to a 30-second spot as well, features Jackson Wang – one of the biggest recording artists in Asia co-starring with the BMW F52.
Shot in Beijing and Shanghai over four days with the director of photography Stephane Vallee, BMW Jackson Wang Beemer Ride was conceived by BMW China’s agency, Juice, and post-production was by Maya Productions in Beijing.
To appeal to the Chinese youth, a group that loves music, social media and fashion, Juice says it wanted to create a music video style campaign that looked and felt like one of Jackson Wang’ music videos.
“I became personally invested in the campaign at an early date because Juice wanted me to provide more creative input than usually asked for – particularly when it came to the creative tone for the music video,” says Lewis.
Lewis adds, “Hip-hop is a fresh genre in China, so the music video route is not only new for BMW, [but in the] realm of advertising, it is still quite fresh and there is no fixed way of doing a ‘music video’ and ‘commercial’ hybrid.”
“Fortunately, I’ve always been an ‘in-camera’ type director, so I feel what is unique about this piece is the lack of after effects: all background, LED screen effects and camera spins and movements were all in camera. That, coupled with the music video tone and pace, I believe gives BMW a unique injection of youth and innovation,” Lewis says.
“It’s that juxtaposition of old school camera techniques meshed with the modern music video pace edit that gives it something that stands out, especially in a traditional advertising market like China,” addsLewis.
According to Egg Films, both the scale of the job and the language barrier were additional challenges for Lewis but he quickly realised the language of film was a common one.
“It was such an incredible experience collaborating with the creatives and crew in China, a country I had never been to. Stephane, too, was a rock, and our creative collaboration was easy and flowed from the beginning,” Lewis says.
“Admittedly, many on the team – creatives and clients – were taken out of their comfort zone, but it’s that bravery and the team’s ability to rise to the challenge that makes BMW Jackson Wang Beemer Ride a truly special piece,” concludes Lewis.
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