Advertising News South Africa

Tag Heuer Carrera celebrates 60 years with category breaking campaign

This year Tag Heuer Carrera celebrates its 60th birthday.
Image supplied. Ryan Gosling is in the new Tag Heurer Carrera "film" celebrating its 60th anniversary
Image supplied. Ryan Gosling is in the new Tag Heurer Carrera "film" celebrating its 60th anniversary

But in a matchmaking world that's all about heritage and savoir faire, it has nothing to prove, leading to DDB Paris creating a campaign, with a "film", that celebrates the Carrera by breaking all the rules of the category.

The film was launched like the next blockbuster starring Ryan Gosling, with cinematic teasers, trailers, posters and short capsules to keep the conversation going.

The campaign will live on all year through OOH, print and exclusive content on all social media platforms (behind the scenes, videos, bloopers, memes…)

“Tag Heuer Carrera is one of the most iconic collections, not only for Tag Heuer but in the whole watchmaking world,” says George Ciz, chief marketing officer, Tag Heuer.

“Designed by Jack Heuer himself in 1963 and inspired by the Carrera Panamericana, a very dangerous road race in Mexico, some of the greatest drivers in history have worn it. So we wanted to celebrate its 60 years with something really special,” he explains.

Beyond advertising and traditional watchmaking

“We wanted to pay homage to this spirit by creating communication that is as bold as the Carrera and goes beyond advertising and beyond traditional watchmaking tropes,” says Alexander Kalchev, chief creative officer, DDB Paris.

Produced by David Leitch’s 87 North, the film goes far beyond advertising. It’s an action-packed piece of entertainment that lives up to Hollywood standards, filled with crazy stunts, racing cars, adrenaline, and humour.

“We decided to choose a very different tone of voice for this commercial because Tag Heuer has always been a ground-breaking brand, one that dares to do things differently,” explains Kalchev.

You wouldn’t expect less from a collaboration with David Leitch — responsible for some of the most iconic action films of the last decade, from John Wick to Deadpool 2 to last year’s Bullet Train — Nash Edgerton, and of course, starring world-famous actor Gosling.

The perfect incarnation of the Carrere mindset

Gosling is the perfect incarnation of the Carrera mindset. Always pushing the boundaries of what you would expect from him - from romantic comedy to action movies to drama and musicals, it is safe to say that Gosling doesn’t play it safe.

His natural wit and elegance match with a watch born in racing but also designed for everyday life.

In the film, Gosling plays a character who never gives up, embodying the spirit of endurance summed up by the campaign baseline: The race never stops.

“Gosling brought tons of energy and humour to the film. I had so much fun shooting his scenes with David and Vanessa, seeing them improvise hilarious dialogues. Making something like this for a high-end brand is really special,” says Nash Edgerton, director.

Connecting to the brand’s DNA and heritage

Beyond its attitude and prestigious cast, the film connects to the brand’s DNA and heritage in its own way. The Carrera is what triggers the whole story and at the centre of it.

And the only way for Ryan to keep the precious watch is what inspired it in the first place: racing.

Easter eggs referring to Carrera’s history blend seamlessly into the story. From the Porsche Carrera driven by Gosling to cameos of a young Jack Heuer and famous driver Jacqueline Evans De Lopez, from dates hidden in the set to old Panamericana posters.

Reconnecting with its own tradtion

While pushing the boundaries of the watchmaking market, TAG Heuer reconnects with its own tradition of innovative and witty advertising, relying on Gosling’s taste for self-irony and David Leitch’s talent for mixing action with humour.

The Tag Heuer Carrera has so much history it would have been easy to cling to the past. But the Carrera has a different mindset. A pioneering one. It’s always been about breaking new ground and pushing the limits.

The race is on for the next 60 years.

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