Given the actor's reputation for demanding final cut (all right, the director was notoriously insane) and distancing himself from projects he doesn't like, it makes perfect sense that if Edward Norton is going to do a commercial, it's going to be a really good commercial.
This mcgarrybowen spot for Verizon Wireless and Motorola's Droid phone has the performer finding a guy's wallet, stealing someone's girlfriend, running afoul of serious thugs, landing a private jet and gambling for a ferret with a Russian mafioso. It's one of the better 90-second spots we've seen, with enough action packed in to justify the running time and agile enough cutting and writing to make everything clear.
MJZ director Matthijs van Heijningen has done a fine job of delineating each chapter of the story and showcasing Norton's gifts; it's also a very good spot for the brands—we get to see the phone do quite a bit here. There's been a lot of discussion about how thoroughly the invention and proliferation of the cell phone has changed movies; this spot is pretty convincing evidence that it need not ruin them.
Lots of great little bits in this one: I love that the hard-core mobsters are betting on game of Connect Four, and that we have no idea how the key around the hot karaoke bar babe's neck got into our hero's stomach. Also, is that the swankiest karaoke bar anyone has ever seen, or is it just me? I usually end up in the East Village in a room with five friends belting out "I'm Gonna Be" by the Proclaimers. Then someone thinks he can sing "It's the End of the World as We Know It," and everyone goes home.
All right, that's usually me, too.
Client: Verizon Wireless/Motorola Droid
Spot: "A Lot Can Happen in 48 Hours"
Agency: mcgarrybowen New York
Executive Creative Director: Cheryl Van Ooyen
Creative Director: Tiffany Smith
Associate Creative Director: Jamie Massam
Writers: Cheryl Van Ooyen, Tiffany Smith, Alex Flint
Art Director: Jamie Massam
Director of Broadcast Production: Dante Piacenza
Executive Producer: Leelee Groome
Executive Music Producer: Stephanie Diaz-Matos
Production Company: MJZ
Director: Matthijs van Heijningen
Executive Producer: Scott Howard
Producer: Mark Hall
DoP: Chris Soos, Alwin Kuchler
Editorial Company: Rock Paper Scissors
Editors: Adam Pertofsky, Neil Meiklejohn
Executive Producer: Carol Lynn Weaver
Producer: Juliet Batter
VFX: The Mill
Creative Director: Chris Knight
Executive Producer: Jo Arghiris
Senior Producer: Dan Roberts
Producer: Jillian Lynes
3D Artists: Feliz Urquiza, Blake Guest, Matt Bohnert, Ashraf Ghoniem
2D Artists: Chris Knight, Margolit Steiner, Daniel Thuresson, Chris Payne, Jake Maymudes, Tara DeMarco
Matte Painting: Andy Wheater
Motion Graphics: Byron Slaybaugh