Back to IndieWire

Rio Olympics: Nike Opening Ceremony Ad Pushes Beyond Limits with The Daniels, ‘Swiss Army Man’ Directors

The short film is narrated by Oscar Isaac and features a slew of recognized athletes such as Serena Williams, Neymar Jr. and Kevin Durant.

Nike Serena Williams

Nike heads to the Rio Olympics with the mentality that life isn’t about finding your limits, it’s about realizing you have none. The athletic wear brand released a new ad during the opening ceremony that hopes to inspire many young athletes to work hard for their dreams.

Directed by “Swiss Army Man” helmers Daniel Kwan and Daniel Scheinert, better known as The Daniels, the short film is the second in the brand’s “Just Do It — Unlimited” campaign. With a fun voiceover provided by Oscar Isaac, the video contains a slew of both unknown and popular athletes, including Brazilian soccer superstar Neymar Jr., Serena Williams, Aaron Gordon, English Gardner, Giancarlo Stanton and so many more.

READ MORE: Rio 2016 Review: Olympics Opening Ceremony Is Uneasy Blend of Culture and Commerce

The video starts off showing a montage of amateur sports players and describing how one day they’ll achieve greatness. “All of these athletes are terrible now, but they’ll all do big things one day,” the actor says.

Little by little, they start achieving unimaginable goals. “When everyone pushes their limit they reach their maximum potential and live happily ever after!” continues Isaac. But then halfway through, the “Just Do It” tag appears, and the gymnast who is on the screen shatters the tagline in the air. At that point, things go bananas as other athletes, including Zach LaVine, Kevin Durant, Mo Farah, Nyjah Huston and Su BingTian, show the incredible things that they can do.   

READ MORE: How the ‘Swiss Army Man’ Directors Went From Working With Lil Jon to Daniel Radcliffe

“The end is really just the beginning for someone who’s looking to go beyond their limits, and that’s what that shattering logo represents,” said Nike Global Corporate Communications Director Brian Strong. “‘Unlimited You’ celebrates athletes that break through their perceived limitations and then run past them as if they were never there. The film reflects the full campaign, which is about pushing our potential further than we expected by embracing an unlimited mindset.”

“It’s always refreshing when everything for the spot is really clearly tied in with the campaign,” The Daniels explained in a Q&A provided by Nike. “From the moment we were sent the script, we understood that it’s about being unlimited, and in this spot, the characters are going further than the narrator expects them to. Everyone’s used to watching people achieve peak levels. We wanted to see what would happen if the athletes almost pushed back and had a little bit more fun.”

Watch the spot below:

Stay on top of the latest breaking film and TV news! Sign up for our Email Newsletters here.

This Article is related to: Television and tagged , , ,


Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *