Isaiah Mustafa Goes Global To Drum Up Entries For AICP Awards


Robert Goldrich
Friday, Feb. 25, 2022


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Who knew the Man Your Man Could Smell Like was so fluent in so many tongues? That’s the case with actor and athlete Isaiah Mustafa (star of a series of award-winning Old Spice campaigns), who shows off his linguistic talents in a comedic film promoting entries in the 2022 AICP Awards. Created by the San Francisco agency Erich & Kallman, the film was produced by Arts & Sciences and directed by Adam Brodie.
Identified on screen as an “Advertising Icon,” Mustafa opens the piece by talking about how winners at the AICP Awards will join the film archives of The Museum of Modern Art, quickly adding, “I’m in there six times.” It then skews into new territory, both in terms of the script and the target audience, as Mustafa points out he’s not just talking to the English-speaking countries out there. He bursts into fluent Spanish, extolling ad professionals in the many Spanish-speaking countries to consider entering.

But Mustafa en Español is just the beginning: with a wry delivery, he proceeds to address the audience in French, Portuguese, German, Chinese, Italian, Japanese and Swedish, lacing each pitch with humor. As subtitles provide translation, he says to the French, “You make awesome commercials, want to be in a museum?” And to the Brazilians, he exhorts, “You guys LOVE awards, right?”

The strategy behind the film, which was written by Erich & Kallman Chief Creative Officer Eric Kallman, is simple: the AICP Awards have been fully inclusive for the past three years, open to entries from around the world. Who better to remind them than Mustafa?

“Everyone in the world knows who Isaiah is,” said Kallman. “And now he’s speaking to me in my language. And that’s what we think will make this film something people will relate to and want to share.”

“We opened all categories in the AICP Show, AICP Next Awards and AICP Post Awards to work from all markets in response to the increased globalization of the industry,” explained AICP president and CEO Matt Miller. “We also wanted to accommodate requests from production companies and agencies all over the world who wanted to have their work considered for recognition alongside the best work originating in the U.S. As our international footprint has expanded, this film captures that scope while also reflecting the unique role our awards play in honoring excellence in both craft and creativity in this global community.”

Kallman noted that Mustafa actually delivered all of the dialogue in the film himself, with no dubbing. “He approached this like an athlete, and with an athlete’s mindset,” Kallman said. “He’s just got so many gifts, and they’re on display in this film.”


Client AICP Awards Agency Erich & Kallman Eric Kallman, copywriter. Production Company Arts & Sciences Adam Brodie, director; Sean Meehan, DP; Pat Harris, producer; Ivy Jane, associate producer; Mal Ward, exec producer; Christa Skotland, director of production; Milena Milicevic, head of production. Editorial Cosmo Street Justin Trovato, editor; Yvette Cobarrubias, managing partner/exec producer; Laura Mirabella, post producer; Chris Rentie, assistant editor. Audio Post Lime Studios Jeff Malen, mixer. Color Apache  Steve Rodriguez, colorist. GFX John Erdman, GFX; Taylor Armstrong, VFX supevisor. Music Musicbed Talent Isaiah Mustafa

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