NEOGAMA and DIAGEO launch the first campaign created in Brazil for Johnnie Walker


The awakening of a giant that slept where the Sugar Loaf stands today is the center of the multimedia campaign that encompasses TV, theaters, print ads, social and digital media and radio

Last Updated: October 10, 2011 7:26 pm GMT
(October 10, 2011) The Sugar Loaf isn’t just a Brazilian postcard. In NEOGAMA’s new commercial for Johnnie Walker, it is actually part of a giant that had been sleeping there for years and finally wakes up.

NEOGAMA and DIAGEO launch the first campaign created in Brazil for Johnnie Walker

With this metaphor, NEOGAMA created a campaign approved globally to be aired in Brazil. It’s the first time Johnnie Walker has developed a local campaign specifically for one country.

The campaign will air nationally starting on October 7th online and October 9th on TV.

"Brazil’s progress, along with the brand's expressive growth in the country inspired the development of an exclusive campaign for our market. As Johnnie Walker is abrand that has always been associated with progress, we found the ideal timing for an innovative campaign", says Leandro Medeiros, Marketing Director for the Diageo Scotch portfolio.

This moment is reflected in the record results thebrand is achieving in Brazil. It's the market that presented the largest growth in sales volume for Johnnie Walker during the last fiscal year, with an increase of 30%. "We are the country of the present and of the future. If we consider the luxury sector alone, we'll have over 10 million consumers in the next three years. We're in the center of a virtuous circle of growth", says Otto von Sothen, Diageo's president.

Brazilian idea, International development
Based on one of the most successful brand positionings in the world, “KEEP WALKING,” the new campaign “Rock Giant” has the same grand, iconic and inspiring style of the globally famous commercials of the brand. The Brazilian idea was produced by the British Gorgeous, and the special effects were done by The Mill in New York. The Mill is responsible for several Hollywood movies such as Gladiator.

The idea was inspired by the country’s growth and its importance in the global economy. The challenge was to approach this in a new, truly inspiring way, staying within the theme and the brand mission.

“The idea relates to the fact that the country is itself a giant, a metaphor that is also part of the national anthem and the ‘mythology’ of the country every Brazilian knows so well. But more than flattering the Brazilians or simply riding this wave like many brands do, ‘Keep Walking, Brazil’ is the perfect incentive message to be passed along by the brand to the country. Especially because Brazil really got up from its comfortable crib and woke up the sleeping giant that it was. But this is just the beginning; a brilliantstart to the journey that needs to keep going, because there’s a lot to do in many senses – human, social and economic. ‘Keep Walking, Brazil’ is more than a celebration, it’s a call and an incentive for the country to keep focused in its path to progress. Especially now as the world’s situation gets tougher and persistence becomes an increasingly relevant human value”, explains Alexandre Gama, President/Creative Director at NEOGAMA/BBH and responsible for the creation of the idea, concept and commercial.

A giant production
Besides being the largest marketing effort executed by the brand in Brazil, the new Johnnie Walker campaign is grand in scale. Involving companies and professionals from 11 nationalities, the production employed 420 people – between pre-production, production and post-production – 6 days of shooting, 11 kilometres of film, 2 tons of equipment, 216 extras and 12.150 hours of computer graphics.

Peter Thwaites, the British director of the commercial from Gorgeous, was awarded Outstanding Directorial Achievement Commercials from The Director’s Guild of America in 2008 and has directed films for Honda, AT&T, Vodafone and Guinness, among other global clients.

According to Thwaites, as well as majestic, the Rock Giant project was challenging due to the idea: “The campaign looks like it’s more than a Johnnie Walker campaign, it feels like something iconic for thecountry. It’s a story with a cinematographic content that is as human as it is epic. These are always the best stories to be told”.

The Mill, responsible for the post-production and the composition of the rock giant, is the first special effects house awarded with an Oscar for its work on Ridley Scott’s Gladiator in 2000.
Among the advertising productions in The Mill’s repertoire is the Coca-Cola commercial “It’s Mine,” aired during the Super Bowl and considered by Adweek the commercial of the decade, having received gold both at The Cannes Lions Festival and The Clio Awards.

For Rob Petrie, 3D artist from The Mill, one of the main challenges of the project was the design of the rock giant. “We spent several weeks with a concept designer, as well as a few 3D artists to develop the scale, proportion and look of the creature. The articulation was a major factor in the design itself, as we were limited to how much movement he could have and still be believable and be a part of this world.”

According to Petrie, another great challenge was the development of the special effects,since the work demanded several elements and individual effects such as thecracks, the dust and the rubbish created by the awakening of the giant, whose development had just the shooting as its starting point. “For the creation of the trees on the giant, one of the 3D artists wrote a system that made the trees to react to the giant's movements. The system also allowed boulders and rocks to interact with the trees. All of these FX really bring the giant to life and place him into our world,” says the special effects artist.

The giant in print and online.
For print media, the campaign individualizes the general appeal of the film, speakingdirectly to the people who build the country everyday. There are concrete and inspiring examples of people with stories of personal progress and contribution to the country that, in the ad, are always taking a step forward, like the brand’s logo. The pictures were taken from an angle that shows every person as a giant, reinforcing the importance of their life journeys. The tagline sums up the proposition: “You are the size of your steps. Keep Walking, Brazil.”
In social media there will be a countdown for the TV launch and a premiere just for the brand’s fans at Johnnie Walker’s page on Facebook.

There will also be online pieces aligned with the print ads in the main Brazilian portals.

Client: Diageo Brasil
Title: Rock Giant

Product: Johnnie Walker

Length: 30” and 60”
Creation: Alexandre Gama
RTVC: Maxie Fox, Fernanda Crespo, Tico Cruz and Marcos Camurati
Planning: Eduardo Lorenzi, Luciano Eugenio and Emanuel Spyer
Media: Luciana Schwartz, Gabriela Azevedo and João Paulo Ferraz
Account Management: Silvia Tommasini, Oleg Loretto and Guilherme Fracar
Approval: Tânia César, Leandro Medeiros and Gustavo Hila
Brazilian Adaptation : Full Frame – Rio
Production house: Zohar Cinema & Gorgeous
Director: Peter Thwaites
Producers: Isabelle Tanugi & Anna Hashmi
Photography: Joost van Gelder
Editing: Bill Smedley @ Work Post Production
VFX: The Mill NY
Creative Director: Angus Kneale
Producer: Camila De Biaggi
Shoot Supervisors: Rob Petrie, Angus Kneale
CG TEAM: Lead CG Artists: Vince Baertsoen, Rob Petrie
Effects: Ruben Vanderbroek, Greg Ecker, Pete Hamilton, Nick Ginette, Rick Wallia
Modeling: Paul Liaw, Tom Blake, Olivier Varteressian, Anthony Patti
Texturing: Tim Kim, Mike Viscione, Sandor Toledo, Tomas Fontes Salles
Animation: Ross Scroble
Lighting: Thomas Bardwell , Laurent Makowski
Custom Software : Hai Nguyen
Concept Designer: Jimmy Kiddel, Tim Haldeen
COMPOSITING TEAM: Lead Compositor: Gavin Wellsman
Compositors: Gigi Ng, Kyle Cody, Dan Williams
2D Assists: Dusty Diller, Patrick Mahoney, Randy Krueger, Brian Houlihan, Rosalind Paridis
Telecine: Adam Scott
Telecine Producer: LaRue Anderson
Production Assistant: Colin Blaney
Sound Production: Big Foote Brazil


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