Step aside Audi, there’s a new luxury ride in Marvel films. And it’s the vehicle of Kings. Or one King to be exact – T’Challa from the upcoming Disney/Marvel film, Black Panther.
Lexus, which has had a TV relationship with Marvel’s Agents of Shield for the past 5 seasons, has unleashed a 60-second extended digital version of the Super Bowl LII spot airing February 4. Titled, “Long Live The King,” and helmed by veteran director Samuel Bayer, the spot pairs the flagship luxury performance sedan 2018 Lexus LS 500 F SPORT with the Black Panther, played by Chadwick Boseman.
The high-impact story in “Long Live the King” revolves around the character of T’Challa in his role as Black Panther recovering stolen Vibranium, the mythical ore found only in the Black Panther’s home of Wakanda, and his nearly simultaneous need to represent his country as king at a world leadership conference.
“Long Live the King,” seamlessly incorporates actual footage from the film—notably, of Letitia Wright as T’Challa’s sister, Shuri—and features many of the film’s actors, including the Dora Milaje team of Wakandan special forces: Janeshia Adams-Ginyard, Marija Abney and Zola Williams.
Well, that was pretty badass!
The spot was shot using original costumes and gear from the film, including the Black Panther/King T’Challa outfits, Dora Milaje battle suits and Vibranium canisters. Even the film’s fight choreographer, Jonathan (JoJo) Eusebio, was engaged to stage the spot’s fight scene. It features VFX work by Luma, the studio who created Black Panther’s suit FX for the film. The ad was shot in downtown L.A. at night using a custom lighting unit.
The song “Legend Has It” by Run the Jewels, with its head-bobbing beats and “Step into the Spotlight” lyric, provides the perfect soundtrack for the action as the Black Panther and the LS 500 F SPORT make their insane action. The song, also used in the first trailer for the film, is from the album “Run the Jewels 3,” which debuted at # 1 on Billboard’s Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart for the physical release.
Cooper Ericksen, Lexus’ VP of Marketing was visibly pleased with the heroic team up saying in a statement, “There is an authentic match between the duality of both the Black Panther and the LS. The spot utilizes the Black Panther’s life as a superhero and as royalty to show the two sides of the LS: performance and luxury.”
“This spot feels beautifully cinematic from start to finish,” said Mindy Hamilton, Marvel’s senior vice president of global partnerships and marketing. “With a character as important as Black Panther and a brand as iconic as Lexus, we knew that we had to rise to the occasion by creating something unforgettable. It’s a climactic moment for all of us as we come together to celebrate this wonderful collaboration and enjoy the big game.”
The Super Bowl spot is part of a robust collaboration between Lexus and Marvel Studios’ “Black Panther” that gets geeks like myself all kinds of stoked. The partnership includes the exclusive “Black Panther”-themed event at Comic-Con International: San Diego after-hours last July, and an original graphic novel created with Marvel Custom Solutions titled “Black Panther: Soul of a Machine” introduced at Comic-Con.
This marks the fourth-time Lexus has appeared in the Super Bowl. “Long Live the King” follows Lexus’ 2017 Super Bowl ad “Man and Machine,” as well as spots in the 2015 and 2012 games.
So, you have appearances by Black Panther, the Dora Milaje, and the song “Long Live the King.” Yep, this spot is a Comic Book Fan’s wet dream and will most certainly engage fans of the Super Bowl as well.
Agency: Walton Isaacson
Partners: Aaron Walton and Cory Isaacson
Group Creative Director: Remy Merriex
Group Creative Director: Matt Weiner
Associate Creative Director: Diori Thomas
Associate Creative Director: Michael Craighead
Associate Creative Director: Nick Kamei
Art Director: Carlo Reyes
Executive Producer: Shauna Williams
Associate Producer: Elsa Rubalcava
Account Director: Mike Marinero
Director Project Management: Karen Kohn
Music Supervisor: Andrew Logan
EVP/Group Account Director: Ayiko Broyard
Business Affairs Manager: Angel Cielo
Broadcast Traffic Manager: Lesley Howser
Production Company: Supply & Demand
Director: Samuel Bayer
Executive Producer/Founder: Tim Case
Executive Producer/Managing Director: Jeff Scruton
Head of Production: Nathan De La Rionda
Producer: Dave Kemp
Editorial Company: Rock Paper Scissors
Editor: Adam Pertofsky
Producer: Dre Krichevsky
Assistant Editor: Derrick Monks/Marjorie Sacks
Executive Producer: Rana’ Martin
Head of Production: Shada Shariatzadeh
Managing Director: Linda Carlson
Post House: Method Studios LA
Executive Producer: Cara Lehr
Producer: Julia Paskert
Lead Flame Artist: Emily Irvine
Flame Artists: Aaron Neitz, Kelly Bumbarger, Jason Frank, Wensen Ho, Aidan Thomas, Thomas Downs, Cecile Tecson, Sean Wilson, Cody Edwardson, Sean Anderson
Lead Colorist: Beau Leon
Color Assistant: Jonah Braun
Data Services: Evan Reinhard
Senior Color Producer: Andrew McLintock
VFX: Luma Pictures
VFX Supervisor: Kevin Souls
VFX Producer: Michael Perdew
Digital Effects Supervisor: Justin Johnson
Animation Director: Raphael A. Pimentel
Supervisors: Alexandre Cancado and Andrew Zink
Associate Producer: Katryna Shattuck
VFX Production: Catherine Hughes, Andrew Kalicki, David Entin, Kathrine McClure, Robert Cohen, and Timothy Bond
Lead Artists: Alex Khan, Eddie Porter, Garrett Wycoff, Joe Censoplano, Mathieu Aerni, Shawn Miller
Compositors: Cameron Sorgi, Fabian Jimenez, Federico La Tona, Gian Ignacio Lombardi, James Fetter, John Helton, Kevin Kim, and Meagan Green
CG Artists: Alejandro Solorzano, Ambrose McDuffy, Andrew Clarke, Christian Salvador, Dan Riddle, David Fonti, Dominic Francis, Edison Lau, Haetsal Kim, Hector Aguirre, Jesse Cohen, John Cassella Jr., Marcos D. Romero, Michael North, Michelle Jung, Nicolas Pierquin, Nicholas Hodgson, Sichen Zhang, Thanapoom Siripopungul, and Tiffany Vochatzer
On Set Acquisition: Sam Bourne
Senior Pipeline TD: Nathan Rusch
Voiceover: Blair Underwood
Song/Artist: “Legend Has It” by Run the Jewels
Composers: Jaime Meline, Mike Render, Torbitt Schwartz, Wilder Schwartz Kerry Minnear, Derek Shulman, Philip Shulman, Ray Shulman
Recording Studio: Juice Studios
Engineer/Sound Mixer: Scott Burns