Jack Daniel's Drinkers Comically Seize the Moment in New Global Campaign

Energy BBDO urges viewers to 'Make It Count'

Who hasn't fantasized about ...

• Tossing your phone into a lake, just as a call from your boss arrives?
• Ordering every item on a fancy bistro's menu?
• Grabbing the 1-wood for a long drive—even though you're the caddy?
• Yanking a big-rig's air-horn cord for a healthy honk! while the driver pays for his gas?

We haven't, actually. But the folks in "First Timers," Energy BBDO's hero film for Jack Daniel's latest campaign, indulge in all that more, with a shot of Old Time Tennessee Whiskey as the chaser:

Jack Daniel’s | First Timers

Better run faster, dude—that trucker's not amused!

Fun stuff, even if the antics are a tad immature. Still, such small rebellions appear powerful and cathartic in these Covid times, when our lives feel frustratingly limited and/or out of control.

The minute-long spot from Reset director Ian Pons Jewell anchors Jack's first truly global effort, with work breaking this week across TV, digital, social, print and out-of-home platforms in more than 100 countries.

"We had been spending a lot of time thinking about how people get the most out of their lives, or how they 'Make it Count,'" Energy BBDO creative director Lucas Owens tells Muse. "We concluded that that life is lived in moments, rather than in the pursuit of big accomplishments. So, we started asking each other questions like 'What have you always wanted to do?'—with the caveat that they had to be things you could do right now."

After some brainstorming, the creatives discovered "the answers were amazing because they weren't only fun and relatable, but they also painted an insightful picture of the person answering them," Owens says. "For example, one of our team members had always wanted to sing 'I Will Always Love You' to his wife on the P.A. system in a grocery store."

That one's not in the spot, nor is a vignette "that included an English grandmother on a porch with a glass of Jack saying, 'I've always wanted to be in a Jack Daniel's commercial,'" Owens says. "It was kind of this meta thing we considered doing at the end."

Maybe they can serve those in the next round.

The crew shot in Kiev, Ukraine, with agency and client folks tracking progress remotely in real time. "This created a let's-band-together-and-make-this-work mentality, ultimately becoming one of the most seamless productions I've ever been a part of," Owens says.

"Probably the best part of the production was when we'd drink Jack together over Zoom at the end of the 14-hour shoots," he recalls. "It was a great way to celebrate each day and simultaneously live out the idea of the spot we were creating."

CREDITS

Jack Daniel's "Make It Count" 

Client: Jack Daniel's
Title: Make It Count

Agency: Energy BBDO 
Chief Creative Officers: Josh Gross & Pedro Pérez
Chief Innovation Officer: Alan Parker
Creative Directors: Lucas Owens & Monique Kaplan
Associate Creative Directors: Jordan Sparrow & Ricky Johanet
Design Director: Hung Vinh

Head of Integrated Production: John Pratt
Executive Producer: Jeff Davis
Producer: John Paul Ward
Executive Director of Music: Daniel Kuypers

Managing Director: Lianne Sinclair
Senior Global Account Director: Greg Morrison
Account Supervisor: Arika Jeter
Account Executive: Emma Flynn
Chief Strategy Officer: Larry Gies
Group Strategy Director: Allison ArlingGiorgi
Strategy Director: Chase Donahue
Social Strategist: Casey Campbell

Production Company: RESET Content
Director: Ian Pons Jewell
Producer: Jon Adams

TV Editorial Company: Whitehouse Post
Executive Producer: Caitlin Grady
Post Producer: Ryan Smith
Editor: Tobias Shum
Assistant Editor: Paul Chung

Visual Effects Company: Carbon
Flame Artist: Philip Akka

Audio Company: Wave Audio
Senior Audio Designer: Chris Afzal

Color Company: ETC London
Colorist: Luke Morrison

Content Editorial Company: Flare Chicago
Director of Studio Production: Mitch Monzon
Executive Producer of Post Production: Jenny McDonald
Associate Design Producer: Allison Hemingway
Senior Motion Designer: Viky Kryvanos

Content Color Company: Nice Shoes
Colorist: Ron Sudul
Producer: Serena Bove

Media Agency: Spark Foundry

PR Company: DVL Seigenthaler/Finn Partners

David Gianatasio
David Gianatasio is senior editor at Clio Awards.

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