Budweiser is teaming with Academy Award winner Spike Lee for a baseball-season-long campaign to recognize Jackie Robinson's 100th birthday and his accomplishments on and off the field.
The campaign was envisioned and executed by Dentsu Aegis Network, with Isobar leading creative and Vizeum handling media strategy and implementation. The agencies partnered with Lee on production with Taking Over and 40 Acres.
Lee's "Impact" short film is narrated by Robinson's daughter Sharon to spotlight the historic moment when the baseball legend walked onto Ebbets Field on April 15, 1947 to break baseball's color barrier after more than 50 years of segregation. The spot mixes historic black and white footage with recreated clips of fans watching the moment at a local bar, drinking Budweiser under a branded Budweiser neon sign, and adds footage of a current group of citizens reciting the oath to become American citizens.
The three-minute film will live on
Budweiser’s social channels with a one-minute version airing for the first time on Opening Day on March 28 as a TV commercial, in cinemas and in ballparks across the country.
"We all united around a shared vision to commemorate Jackie’s legacy and remind the country of the values he stood for," says Duncan Smith, global client president, Dentsu Aegis Network.
Budweiser was looking for an opportunity to partner with Spike Lee over a period of time, but "it was always about identifying the right moment, the right creative territory and the right story," explains Smith. “Spike is not only a visionary film director; he is a passionate sports fan, Jackie Robinson fan, and close friend of the Robinson family.”
Underpinning the campaign is a direct partnership with the Jackie Robinson Foundation, with Budweiser making a "landmark" financial commitment to ensure the Jackie Robinson Museum opens in 2019. Additionally, 42 cents from every Limited Edition Jackie Robinson Budweiser sold during the MLB season will be donated to the Jackie Robinson Foundation.