The Drum’s Ad of the Day highlights work that stands head and shoulders above the rest. Today’s winner is James Squire’s ‘Ordinary Be Damned’ by Milk + Honey United.
Australian beer brand James Squire, alongside creative agency partner Milk + Honey, has released an epic spot detailing the interesting life of its founder – narrated by Game of Thrones actor Rory McCann (aka The Hound).
‘Ordinary Be Damned’ tells the tale of James Squire who, after being transported as a criminal to Australia from Britain, seemed destined to lead an ordinary life. In the 90-second film, viewers hear how he ‘went to church, remembered his manners and respected the law’. While the brooding voiceover describes the undistinguished life of a common man of the time, the visuals on screen depict a very different story, highlighting many of Squire’s audacious adventures.
The spot culminates in a single dynamic camera move that takes viewers to an old brewery courtyard and into a banquet hall, where the charismatic chancer is seated at the head of the table. Closing with the line ‘James Squire was content just being an ordinary man’, the new ‘Ordinary Be Damned’ brand line – and Squire’s unflinching gaze – say otherwise.
The Lion-owned brewery hopes the new campaign will connect modern-day drinkers with its unique origin story. “’Ordinary Be Damned’ marks a significant part of revitalizing James Squire with our first masterbrand campaign,” said Malcolm Eadie, portfolio director at Lion. “Squire led a bold and intrepid life full of ingenuity, that was anything but ordinary – a spirit that continues to be relevant for consumers today.”
Support for the project will come from cinema, TV, social, radio and out-of-home (OOH) activations.
“James Squire and the entire Lion team will always hold a special place in our hearts and history, as one of our founding clients,” noted Andy DiLallo, co-founder of Milk + Honey United. “We set out to prove what is possible creatively even during a global pandemic and the result, we’re proud to say, is anything but ordinary.”
Renowned Aussie filmmaker Justin McMillan directed the ad in Tasmania and the OOH images were shot by award-winning photographer Ian Butterworth.
“Most brands would kill for an origin story like this,” added Steve Jackson, co-founder of Milk + Honey United. “But as good as it is, we didn’t want to simply tell his story. We wanted to create an enduring platform and attitude that allows James Squire the brand to think and act like James Squire the man; always turning up in culture just as he turned up in life.”