The Best Work You May Never See: Director Sam Coleman, Ogilvy Johannesburg "Can’t Resist" For KFC South Africa


Robert Goldrich
Tuesday, Aug. 9, 2022


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All willpower crumbles under the seductive powers of the Colonel in director Sam Coleman’s irresistible new “Can’t Resist” campaign for KFC and Ogilvy Johannesburg. Produced by South Africa's Patriot Films, the tantalizingly dark and moody spots portray the very moment when we give into our deepest desires, in this case KFC. 

The campaign tells the stories of frustration, desire, resistance and finally letting go. Using a long take approach largely free of technique and editing, Coleman explores the journey from the first moment of seduction all the way to surrender. With no dialogue, the spots are about the character’s inner struggle and in the red glow of the ever-present Colonel, the witchy atmosphere is underscored by a rendition of Nina Simone’s “I Put a Spell on You.”

In this spot titled “Boot” (meaning the trunk of a vehicle), we see a woman place a bucket of KFC chicken in the boot of her car/SUV during what looks like a rainy night. She closes the trunk and we see the KFC bucket standing in solitude. Soon she returns, opens the trunk, grabs the bucket, pulls off the lid and devours a drumstick in the pouring rain.

For “Boot” and the other commercials in the package, Coleman elicits evocative performances in ostensibly small uninterrupted moments, while crafting a strong visual world. Elegantly drawing the audience in through his choice of angles, he captures the instant the characters become powerless to the finger lickin’ indulgence.  

Coleman said, “The challenge was to show the exact moment when resistance caves in and the characters succumb to KFC. In a sense, that then made the moments before and after equally important. Allowing the actor to be caught in that moment before they give in, and letting that build up, seemed to be where the good stuff would be. I opted to let the tension build as much as possible and let each character interpret their own ‘breakdown’ without cutting.”


Client KFC South Africa Agency Ogilvy Johannesburg Kabelo Moshapaio, chief creative officer; Peter Little, executive creative director; Safaraaz Sindhi, creative partner; Chantelle Dos Santos, creative director; Rob Hart, sr. art director; Naledi Manama, art director; Andre Vrodoljak, Abas Rashid, sr. copywriters; Tsakane Mogale, sr. TV producer; Natalie Choate, production manager. Production Company Patriot Films, Cape Town Sam Coleman, director; Zayd Halim, exec producer; Tess Tambourlas, sr. producer; Kelly Ryan, production manager; Tania Onyems, production coordinator; Pierre De Villiers, DP; Carey Lagoe, 1st AD; Keenan McAdam, art director; Marilyn Shorten, food stylist; Sam Mdluli, KFC chef; Catherine De Reuck, wardrobe stylist; Carla Fourie, hair & makeup. Postproduction Priest Matthew Swanepoel, editor. Color/Online Refinery Cape Town Kyle Stroebel, colorist; Nathan Anderson, online. Sound Sterling Sound Lorens Persson, engineer. Music Cover track: “I Put a Spell on You” by Adona Andrews. Marc Algranti Music, music clearance

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