Coca-Cola began telling the story of its polar bear family with the Always Coca-Cola campaign in 1993. And polar bears have been part of the Coke story since 1922.
But it was the middle of 2012 when Coke’s polar bear family began winning hearts. And that is in no small part due to Australia’s Animal Logic who created the CGI bear family for Wieden + Kennedy Portland’s interactive Superbowl commercials.
Animal Logic also created the animals for Happy Feet.
The bears created for the three Superbowl commercials, Catch, Superstition and Arghh, were given ‘human’ characters. “I think the difference between these spots to how the polar bears had been seen before was that in a lot of the older commercials, it was sort of centred around family, so you’d have a polar bear family doing what they do – whereas this was quite specifically targeting people at home watching the Superbowl,” Animal Logic director, David Scott explained. “So it meant they had to be very relatable and approachable and because of the live nature of it as well…they’re just like us watching the game – that dictated a large part of how the bears would be designed.”
Relatable embraces endearing, a quality of which Ridley Scott has made the most in the new Coca Cola polar campaign that launched last week. The 2013 campaign kicked off with a 6 minute film that would make a heart carved in granite crumble and a 30 second TV spot.
The film was directed by John Stevenson who also directed Kung Fu Panda, and produced by Ridley and his late brother, Tony Scott. Tony Scott jumped to his death from the Vincent Thomas Bridge in San Pedro, California, in August 2012. Perhaps the film's story is a homage to him? Watch it and wonder.