Footsteps with a boombox come into view, and then come a set of public loudspeakers—the kind you’d associate with social and public service announcements in a village, or a religious ceremony. But instead, another sort of anthem bursts in. And it is catchy and it is fast, and it escalates your involuntary foot tapping into an immediately-off-the-chair spot jog—or a jig.
Indian advertising is ringing the bell of high-strikers all over. Case in point: the new ‘Da da ding’ advertisement for Nike Women by Wieden + Kennedy India. The video caught eyeballs when early Monday morning on Facebook, Deepika Padukone gave every Monday-weary person the inspiration they needed.
“When I was growing up, my father said to me, ‘…always remember the three D’s – Discipline, Dedication and Determination.’ Sport has taught me how to handle failure. It has also taught me how to handle success. And so I want to say to every girl and every boy and every woman and every man...play a sport...because it changed my life...and it will change yours too!” Padukone, who was a national level badminton player before becoming a Bollywood leading lady, said in her post.
The video, which she shared along with this post features a range of women—boxers getting in the ring; cricket players in a dusty maidan; a woman doing push-ups, solo in her apartment bedroom; a dancer atop a car wearing a striking fluorescent jacket; lean runners along Marine Drive, a spunky basketball team playing in an alley; a gang of girls zigzagging through overhanging, drying clothes, with a football. There are all kinds of women, and they are all competitive, active, and overall fierce.
Mumbai is shown in dusty tones. But these women in different colourful Nike-gear break colour onto the screen. The only men you see are on the sidelines: a sleepy man in a car, or a group that watches from terraces of low buildings as girls and women move, run, and climb over their cars. You don’t need to look for a message in the ad that tells you to get up, get out, and get moving. You already want #JustDoIt—the ad campaign that Nike is launching a new part of, with this advertisement.
Directed by French director François Rousselet, this Wieden + Kennedy India ad’s super-charged music is by Genera8ion, and features American rapper Gizzle. Prominent athletes—some familiar and others whose faces most of India is yet to become familiar with—star in this ad. These include squash player Joshna Chinappa, footballer Jyoti Ann Burrett, field hockey player Rani Rampal, and cricketers Smriti Mandhana, Harmanpreet Kaur, and Shubhlakshmi Sharma.
Here is the video, with its striking shots and powerful music to go with its powerful faces: