So you've developed a flashy new plug-in hybrid sports car, and now you need to advertise it. Self-deprecating is a no-no, as people may not take the new technology seriously. Artful weirdness has its place, but that's not appropriate either. And while the car is fast, footage of it screaming along the road doesn't really send out the right message.
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Time to bring out the smooth direction of the Hollywood pros—something BMW has done with its series of commercials for the 2015 i8 plug-in hybrid. Behind each of the spots, called Attitude, Power and Genesis, is Oscar-nominated director Gus Van Sant. Van Sant's previous work includes Good Will Hunting, Finding Forrester and Milk, and he has also directed music videos for the Red Hot Chili Peppers, David Bowie and Elton John.
The i8 slots feature actors Mickey Sumner, Sam Hazeldine and Michael Pitt, describing themselves in the position of the i8. As with many car ads—particularly those from luxury firms—they're a little on the pretentious side, but each minute-long segment certainly draws your attention. Few details of the car itself permeate the adverts, though there are a few mentions of the i8's carbon fiber construction and plenty of sounds and images. Do they have the right impact? Watch each video and judge for yourself—and let us know below whether they'd convince you to buy an i8.