To mark its 160th anniversary, watchmaker TAG Heuer is relaunching its iconic collection, TAG Heuer Carrera, born from a passion for motor racing. To promote the occasion, DDB Paris teamed with TAG Heuer to create a campaign featuring an endurance racing car driver behind the wheel at night, overcoming seemingly impossible challenges with mental strength, resiliency and sheer passion for action.
A prime component of the campaign is this 100-second film, The Longest Night, directed by Daniel Wolfe via Paris-based production company Standard Films with music and sound design from West Los Angeles-based Barking Owl. The work of the Barking Owl ensemble--including composer Atticus Ross, sound designer Morgan Johnson, creative director/partner Kelly Bayett, producer Ashley Benton and audio post mixer Mike Franklin--catapulted the piece to the #1 slot in SHOOT’s quarterly Top Ten Tracks Chart.
“More than a classic endurance racing video, the idea is amazing. Clean. Primal. Archetypal. We’re tapping into something deeper, into a collective unconsciousness. Ever since I saw Le Mans, I’ve loved TAG Heuer, loved the brand’s deep-rooted connection and love of motorsports. And from that, exploring cinema’s relationship with man and the automobile,” said Wolfe.
Wolfe and Barking Owl also have a special relationship--one in which the music/sound house is brought into the process at an early stage. “We work with Daniel as much as possible,” related Bayett. “He is absolutely one of our favorite collaborators. He will usually bring us into the initial pitch as part of his overall plan. They contacted us soon after the shoot and we started working with Daniel on crafting the creative immediately.”
Bayett noted that while the timing of the project brought logistical hurdles, it also helped spark a strong esprit de corps, empathy and a simpatico feeling among the collaborators in different corners of the world. She explained, “The biggest challenge on The Longest Night was actually more of a global challenge since the agency was in Paris and we were in Los Angeles. It was awarded just before France went into lockdown. So, we were met with delays and had to learn how to create and produce an international job while working from home in the midst of COVID shutdowns that were happening on different schedules all over the world. It was pretty interesting though, because we could all talk about what we were going through in our countries. We felt so connected in the strangest way because we were going through a global pandemic with people on the other side of the world who were feeling the same things we were feeling.”
“TAG Heuer is an iconic brand, offering a very unique proposition in the watchmaking world by combining high performance with refinement and sophistication, and we are very proud to bring its legacy to life,” said Alexander Kalchev, chief creative officer at DDB Paris.
Kalchev headed a DDB Paris creative team which also included copywriter Benoit Oulhen, art director Mickael Jacquemin, producer Quentin Moenne Loccoz, post producer Jerome Deplatiere, and strategic planners Sebastian Genty and Claude Henri Galbois.
The film is part of an overall campaign to support the recently released TAG Heuer Carrera Sport Chronograph. The worldwide campaign includes activations on social media and other channels.
Click here for this quarter’s Top Ten Tracks Chart.
Client TAG Heuer Agency DDB Paris Alexander Kalchev, executive creative director; Benoit Oulhen, copywriter; Mickael Jacquemin, art director; Quentin Moenne Loccoz, producer; Jerome Deplatiere, post producer; Sebastian Genty, Claude Henri Galbois, strategic planning. Production Company Standard Films, Paris Daniel Wolfe, director; Benoit Debie, DP; Julie Mathieu, producer. Editorial The Quarry Paul Watts, editor. Cosmic Talents Maxime Pozzi Garcia, editor. Music/Sound Barking Owl, West Los Angeles Atticus Ross, composer; Morgan Johnson, sound designer; Kelly Bayett, creative director; Ashley Benton, producer. Audio Post Barking Owl, West Los Angeles Mike Franklin, mixer. VFX Mikros Nicolas Huguet, visual effects