Chanel No 5 embraces creative madness

A number of premium brands are starting to take advantage of longer-form benefits of using YouTube as an advertising channel as recently seen with Guinness’ ‘Sapeurs’ mini-documentary, Corona’s short surf films and Johnnie Walker’s ‘The Gentleman’s Wager’. As illustrated in each of these videos, brand dollars can translate into high production videos, which are entertaining despite falling into the advertising category.

Having seen its branding counterparts enjoy success on YouTube through longer form content, Chanel No 5 has recently commissioned Baz Luhrmann to direct a short film, and the result steps very close to the line of utter madness.


The over three-minute long video plays out to a very sombre rendition of Olivia Newton John’s ‘You’re the one that I want’ and depicts Gisele Bündchen playing a surfer/model in a troubled relationship with a ridiculously suave Daario Naharis (best known for having his face crushed in Game of Thrones).

The film opens with Bündchen staring intensely from within the mouth of a CGI barrel at what seems to a be a wave based on Tahitian surfbreak Teahupo’o. While she is in the water she abandoned by her beau, who then does what any grown man would do in such a situation: go to a trendy bar to mourn in public.

Although the ad left the team here at StopPress a little perplexed, the astute writers at Vanity Fair explained it by saying:

“This Chanel No. 5 film-commercial, titled ‘The One That I Want, is about the 21st-century woman who has it all but draws the line on her career when her marriage is in trouble, ultimately choosing love. Bündchen, aptly identified as the Chanel No. 5 woman of today, is reflective of how Coco Chanel herself brought the ‘new era’ into the old world in the first place with her new-world female power and sensibilities.”    

And this isn’t the first time the first time that Luhrmann has been brought in by Chanel to give viewers a glimpse at the modern woman. Previously, the director also leant his skills to a spot featuring Nicole Kidman—and the result was equally bizarre.

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