Icebreaker steps into sharky waters for latest ad

Icebreaker has released ‘Shark Scientist’, the first of three ads for its latest ‘Human Nature’ campaign with Motion Sickness. The two-minute spot focuses on marine biologist and shark enthusiast Riley Elliott. 

The ad ties in strong themes of overcoming fear while appreciating the co-existence between humans and mother nature. 

For most of us, the thought of sharks sends the alarm bells ringing, however, Elliott challenges that notion in the advertisement, presenting a refreshing view to the demonization of sharks often seen in grotesque films like Jaws.

Instead, it presents an intimate change for Elliott, who transformed his fear of sharks into a fascination with them. As he says in the film, “fear is a benchmark for challenge”.

It’s not the first time Elliott’s story has been told, and an article by The New Zealand Herald, which labels him as ‘Shark Man’ – unravels how he conquered his fear and is now crusading to change the fear of one of the largest global predator.

Global channel marketing manager at Icebreaker Kristin Borley says Elliott’s story aligned with the campaign which focuses on real people, telling real stories. She adds, “it celebrates humans working symbiotically with nature”.

Filmed in Elliott’s hometown in the Coromandel, the imagery and sound effects invite the viewer to share the experience in the water, showing lingering shots of Elliott stroking the apex predator.

Creative director at Motion Sickness Sam Stuchbury says he aimed to give the audience a feeling of being in the person shoes, showing the sensation of being underwater and the intimate, and often vulnerable, feeling that is experienced.

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