The campaign ‘Gen Less’ is a collaboration between some of the most iconic and powerful world leaders, past and present. Created by Clemenger BBDO and Assembly alongside the Energy Efficient and Conservation Authority (EECA) and it features leaders rallying together, to form a new powerful message about the importance of conversing energy in the fight for our environment.
Gen Less, shown also through the ‘<’ symbol, is a call to action for our world to bridge the divide between generations and energize climate change action before it is too late. Faces in the video include the likes of Albert Einstein, Amelia Earhart, Anne Frank, Carl Sagan, Dame Whina Cooper, Eleanor Roosevelt, Franklin Roosevelt, John F. Kennedy, Kofi Annan, Lady Bird Johnson, Mahatma Gandhi, Malcom X, Martin Luther King Jr, Mother Teresa, Neil Armstrong, Nelson Mandela, Princess Diana Spencer, Richard Feynman, Robert F. Kennedy, Sir Edmund Hillary, Stephen Hawking, Wangari Maathai and Winston Churchill, all in a holographic style.
The campaign takes these leaders most powerful words and combines them to create a new speech, one which demands change for ourselves, our future and our planet.
Brigid Alkema, executive creative director at creative agency Clemenger BBDO, says Gen Less (short for Generation Less) is united around a central thought.
“It takes all of us, a generation, to ignite real change. Those in Gen Less are united not by their age, but by their collective decision to embrace life with fewer emissions from energy. An entire generation choosing to embrace a better, fuller, more sustainable life, through less.”
The creative collaboration by the two partners comes in time for Climate Week in New York, which goes from 23-29 September. Another powerful voice pushing for the change in our structure is Greta Thunberg, presenting a speech for the world leaders at the summit, she rightful berated those that have lead us this far.
“We are at the beginning of mass extinction and all you can talk about is money and fairy tales of eternal economic growth - how dare you!”.
According to the Gen Less official site, the campaign is promoting a lifestyle that uses less energy to help halt climate change.
The campaign aims to unite New Zealand businesses, individuals and organizations to live in more climate-friendly ways. So far Countdown, EcoStore, Ethique, NZ Post, Stuff, Wishbone Design, Westpac, Lewis Road, WWF and Auckland Council have joined the community, showing the '<' symbol on their own pages.
Clemenger BBDO and EECA have created a new speech from history, recycling and reusing existing footage to creating something entirely new. According to the release, the spot is a mix of well-known footage and little known archive speeches.
Jonny Kofoed, Director of Motion Design at Assembly, reflects: “Using existing footage and photos to thread these figures together from across time and place was a momentous, unique challenge. We wanted to acknowledge each of the individual impacts they all made during their own lifetimes, while uniting them together with a singular feel and voice that would resonate with people of today’s world.”
The ultimate figures and quotes were chosen to reflect a diversity of thought, cultures, backgrounds and beliefs that represent people from all walks of life.
The film also features Māori rights activist Dame Whina Cooper, who led New Zealand’s Māori Land March in 1975. Her son, Joseph Cooper, wrote the unique karanga (ceremonial call) featured at the end of the film, their generations united as one under Gen Less. Spoken in Māori, the karanga echoes his mother’s words and rallies all people to unite behind our common goal:
He karanga ki nga iwi puta noa i te ao ki nga nekehanga āhuarangi o te ao.
"Kia mataara" Kaua e tukua
"Kia orata" ngia te ao
Kia tupato! Kia tupato!
Kia tupato! I nga korohu kino.
To the people of the world, regarding climate change. Be awake; Be vigilant; Be cautious.
Do not allow the destruction of the world through harmful carbon emissions in our atmosphere.
Be Awake. Be Vigilant. Be Cautious.
Client: EECA (Energy Efficiency & Conservation Authority)
Creative Agency: Clemenger BBDO Wellington
Media Agency: OMD
PR Agency: Porter Novelli