It’s not exactly rare for big movie directors to helm commercials. In fact, many of today’s most famous directors got their start in commercials, from David Fincher to Michael Bay. One of the most famous commercials of all time was the “1984” spot for Apple, directed by Ridley Scott, which aired during the Super Bowl in 1984. Now Scott is back behind the camera on another ad, but this time his full “short film” is getting a showcase online before the 60-second spot airs during the Oscars this Sunday.
The below ad is for Hennessy X.O., and the concept behind the commercial is that Scott is visualizing the seven tasting notes of X.O through seven mind-bending worlds. It’s visually arresting thanks to Scott’s eye and his work with longtime cinematographer Dariusz Wolski, and it also boasts an original score from Daniel Pemberton, who worked with Scott on All the Money in the World and also composed the score for last year’s Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse.
The four-minute feature film is pretty cool, and it’s a nice reminder of the fact that commercials are oftentimes an opportunity for directors to experiment with cutting-edge new technology and cameras. The resolution here is stunning.
Check out the full four-minute short film below, followed by the 60-second spot that will air during the Oscars and a behind-the-scenes video in which Scott emphasizes that what he made here is “pure art.”