State Farm and ESPN Wrapped Up 'The Last Dance' With Another Fun Deepfake Ad

Keith Olbermann and Linda Cohn join the antics

A few weeks back, State Farm scored serious advertising points during the premiere of The Last Dance, ESPN's lauded documentary about Michael Jordan and the 1997-98 Chicago Bulls.

In a fun spot fusing 1998 SportsCenter footage and deepfake technology, SportsCenter's Kenny Mayne appeared to predict The Last Dance's existence 22 years in the future.

That commercial delighted fans and pundits worldwide. So, on Sunday night, during the finale of the doc, State Farm, working once again with ESPN CreativeWorks and ad agency Translation, called another clever play, airing the :30 below.

At first, anchors Keith Olbermann and Linda Cohn appear to "wrap up" the Bulls' 1998 championship run, until Olbermann makes this bold prediction: "There will never be another team like it … unless Phil Jackson goes and coaches somewhere else, like Los Angeles."

The Final Act | State Farm + ESPN (ft. Keith Olbermann and Linda Cohn)

"I could see them winning five championships, becoming one of the greatest teams of all time," Olbermann says. Which, of course, is exactly what transpired once Jackson left Chicago to lead the Lakers.

Then, he teases fans eager for sports content with the line, "But that's another documentary for another day."

"You're starting to sound like Kenny Mayne," Cohn replies, and the link to State Farm is revealed.

While not quite as tricky as the previous spot, the Olbermann-Cohn commercial, called "The Final Act," proved equally compelling.

Taken together, these ads serve as entertaining reminders of the enduring power of sports at a time when most leagues remain sidelined. They speak to the culture-shaping impact of the games, and tap into our collective consciousness of icons like Michael Jordan in a way that leaves viewers wanting more.

CREDITS

ESPN CreativeWorks
Carrie Brzezinski-Hsu: VP, CreativeWorks and Multimedia Sponsorship Integration
Jay Marrotte: Senior Creative Director
Jamie Overkamp: Creative Director
Andy Truong: Writer
Anthony Nelson: VP, Production
Kyle Wright: Senior Director, Production
Nick Aquilino: Producer
Nicole Gartner: Senior Social Media Branded Content Specialist
Colin Ryan: Disney Ad Sales Manager

Agency: Translation
Chief Executive Officer, Founder: Steve Stoute
President: Ann Wool
Head of Client Services: Susanna Swartley
Group Creative Director: Alex Kaplan
Group Creative Director: Barry Katz
Art Director: Dupree Bostic
Copywriter: Lucas Kelly
Group Account Director: Julia Farber
Account Executive: Stephen Rich
Assistant Account Executive: Bridget Derraugh
Group Strategy Director: John McBride
Strategy Director: Shani Syphrett
Strategist: Megan Mundo
Group Context Director: Joel Rodriguez
Context Director: Evan Auerbach
Senior Context Strategist: Jay Legaspi
Senior Data Analyst: Jineen Carcamo
Senior Project Manager: Ali Schurz

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David Gianatasio
David Gianatasio is senior editor at Clio Awards.

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