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50 Cent's Alaskan Joy Ride

Suzuki's Super Bowl Entry - Boxer's Jim Zoolalian takes an Alaskan joy ride with 50 Cent.
Los Angeles-based Boxer Films director Jim Zoolalian trades in the provincial grace of arctic sleds for the comfort of a premium sedan in the charming new :60 “Sled” for Suzuki out of Siltanen & Partners Advertising, El Segundo, CA promoting the new 2012 Kizashi.

The spot, edited by Boxer’s Ian Arthur, features an Inuit man cruising through majestic arctic terrain in a new Kizashi with his sled dogs along for the ride.  The Super Bowl-slated campaign includes a :60 and a :30 that will air during the game in most major markets. 

To craft a relatable cinematic experience, Zoolalian focused on keeping the spot as authentic as possible, even casting the two lead actors from small Inuit villages in Alaska.  Both acting novices, the duo’s genuine performance and charm make them exceptionally captivating and sympathetic.  Notes Zoolalian, “I was smitten by the performance that we got out of our lead actor.  He was so genuine and fun to watch with a charm to him that is infectious!” 
Having worked on Super Bowl spots for Budweiser and Anheiser-Busch in the past, Zoolalian was familiar with the high stakes of game time ad buys; stakes that were amplified by the inclusion of live animals.  In order to get more personality from the dogs, the production team braved high winds and sub-20˚ weather in a custom soundstage built on a frozen lakebed to capture each of the dogs’ performances individually before splicing them together in post.  Zoolalian notes, “If you look around a car full of guys listening to a rap track, they’re not all doing the same thing.  We wanted to reflect this with the dogs and get them grooving at slightly different rates and have fun with it.”
“Sled” opens on a dramatic shot of snow-capped Arctic mountains and an Inuit man preparing his sled dogs for travel.  We cut to an Inuit couple saying their morning goodbyes and the man gliding across the snow behind his K-9-powered sled.  The spot then fades into the pounding bass of the 50 Cent track “Movin’ on Up” as the ground begins to shake and a red Suzuki Kizashi speeds its way through the powdery snow.  Out of the passenger window, a sled dog hangs its head and tongue out as the wind rushes past.  We then cut to the man and his four furry friends bobbing their heads to the thumping track.  Shots of the car’s exterior show it maneuvering swiftly over the frosty tundra.  Inside the car, the man turns up the heat for his seat warmer and arrives back at his igloo to find his wife puzzled at the sight of the car.  In subtitled Inuit language she questions, “Where’s the sled?”  He hesitates a beat, then replies with a grin, “I traded it in.”

The spot closes on the two Inuits standing next to the car and the Suzuki logo accompanied by the voiceover, “The all-wheel drive Suzuki Kizashi, upgrade your commute.” 

To watch the work, click on the link:

Client: Suzuki
Title: “Sled” :30/:60
Agency: Siltanen & Partners Advertising, El Segundo, CA
CEO/Chief Creative Officer: Rob Siltanen
Partner/Creative Director: Joe Hemp
Partner/President: Tim Murphy
Group Account Director: Doug Ryan
Management Supervisor: Wendy Nicolle
Director, Product & Marketing Planning: John Morel
Broadcast Producer: Anne Kurtzman
Project Manager: Denisse Rios
Business Affairs Manager: Miiko Martin
Production Company: Boxer Films, LA
Director: Jim Zoolilian
President: John Clark
Executive Producer: Beth George
Head of Production: John Quinn   
Editorial Company: Boxer Films, LA
Editor: Ian Arthur
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Loterie Nationale