This lovely film – shot, edited, written and produced by one of our favorite and most talented VJs Francisco Aliwalas (remember Bikin Car Wash for the NY Post?), was commissioned by neither a tv network nor a newspaper.
It was commissioned by RJ Reynolds, the tobacco company.
But it has nothing to do with tobacco.
And it’s not an ad.
It’s a video about ‘lifestyles’.
RJ Reynolds has lots of money.
And they used to spend it on lots of TV commercials.
If you are as old as I am (and still have your memory intact), you will remember The Marlboro Man and can hum the theme. Or LSMFT – Lucky Strike Means Fine Tobacco (greatest taste that you can buy… lsmft if why…). Or, “You get a lot to like with a Marlboro.. filter, flavor, pack or box.
It’s both amazing and frightening.. the crap that gets stuck in your head.
In any event, there are no more cigarette ads on TV, but the tobacco companies have not give up on video.
Not now, not in a world in which you can put video on the web and be in 2 billion homes instantly and for no cost.
So they are bypassing the ‘old’ ways of distribution and doing it themselves. They commission the content, they put it on their website. Who needs to buy ads?
I think that major corporations will increasingly start running their own video. And why not? In a world in which you can put video on the web, what do you really need an ABC or a CBS for anymore?
It takes about 40 years for the impact of new technologies to percolate out into the general public. But if you are clever, you can see what is coming.
And by the way, the video is pretty good – for a VJ… or anyone else.