New Levi’s “To Work” Commercial

For almost a year now, we have been traveling back and forth to a small town in the Monongahela Valley called Braddock, Pennsylvania. Once a bustling steel steel town of 20,000 residents, home to Andrew Carnegie’s first steel mill and the nation’s first Carnegie library, Braddock is now a shell of its former self.

Braddock found us because of its innovative young mayor, John Feterman. The 6′8″, tattooed Harvard graduate found his home in Braddock by chance and has since committed his life to the improvement of the broken town. His no bullshit, straight-shooting approach to rebuilding has inspired a new generation of pioneers to come Braddock. And his appearances in New York Times articles and talk shows have made him a national icon. For the 2010 Levi’s Work Wear campaign, we wanted to do real work, so we flew out to Braddock to meet Mayor Fetterman and see if he was interested in working with Wieden+Kennedy and Levi’s.

The result is a campaign that tells the stories of the workers of Braddock and its real residents who are making a difference in its revival. Only Braddock townspeople were used in the photography and films created for the campaign, and Levi’s invested over one million dollars in the renovation of the community center and the expansion of the urban farm.

This first commercial, directed by John Hillcoat, tells a universal story of work and the potential in America’s new frontier towns.

Cannes: Silver for Integrated
Cannes: Silver Film Craft Cinematography
Cannes: Silver Film CraftScript
Cannes: Bronze Film Craft Direction
Cannes: Shortlist Film Craft Editing
Cannes: Shortlist Film Craft Best Use of Music
One Show: Gold for Films, Documentaries
One Show: Silver for Integrated Branding Campaign
D&AD: TV & Cinema Advertising
D&AD: Integrated & Earned Media
AICP: “To Work,” Agency Art Direction
AICP: “To Work,” Copywriting
PDN Photo Annual: Advertising
Rosey: Print Advertising

Director: John Hillcoat
Director of Photography: Harris Savides
Editor: Tommy Harden
Color: Pascal Dangin
Music+Sound Company: Stimmung
Composer: Richard Wagner
Song: Vorspie

4 Responses to “New Levi’s “To Work” Commercial”

  1. Benjamen says:

    This Braddock series is the most striking and emotional campaign I’ve seen in a long time. The photos and typography in the print ads just blow me away, and the commercials bring tears to my eyes every time I see them. Really something to be proud of.

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