Cannes Lions

Rich Heritage, Bold Future

MANVSMACHINE, Los Angeles / ESPN / 2020

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Overview

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Credits

Overview

Background

This is a launching pad, not a rule book. By first focusing our vision on the package’s materials, lighting, and motion theory, we can create a platform for success; enabling a versatile, signature look that can evolve over time. With key visual ingredients set in place, artists are free to explore the most epic executions; our signature brand materials, lighting, and motion theory guiding the way. Our team was charged with honoring the legacy of 100 years of the NFL, 50 years of Monday Night Football, and ESPN’s 40th anniversary, while creating a visual direction that allows for internal teams, game-day trucks, partners, etc. to create the daily, weekly, and seasonal voluminous content for ESPN network for this anniversary season, as well as the next three.

Idea

The NFL and ESPN are both celebrating big anniversaries this year. The NFL is in its 100th Season, Monday Night Football turns 50, and ESPN is celebrating 40 years of being on air. As the media landscape continues to evolve, both mega brands are experiencing a cultural moment where they want to honor their rich legacies, while staying relevant to a younger and more diverse audience. We created a new brand identity and creative direction for NFL on ESPN which infused elements of their successful past with aesthetics that give the sport a future-forward feel for the next 3-4 years. The result is a visual sweet-spot between the rich heritage of Monday Night Football and the bold future of the sport on ESPN via an ultra-fresh branding package with an extra dose of attitude.

Execution

The project called upon a range of creative capabilities; from redesigning the Monday Night Football shield, introducing new robust typographic and logo systems to experimental 3D animation to be implemented across 6 network shows and for several years to come. We forged the heritage, attitude, and future of football into several top-line ideas and aesthetics that felt revolutionary at the kickoff of the NFL’s 100th Season. Focusing on the elements, we retain every ding, scratch, and scuff on our football objects in all of their textural glory. Cloth and thread simulations weave an energetic narrative of the materials building, stretching, flowing, and clashing on the macro level to sew the badges, branding, and logos of Monday Night Football and the NFL. The only pro-American sport played in the rain, snow, and extreme heat, football’s toughest battle isn’t always the opposing team, but sometimes the weather itself.

Outcome

We've been informed that Monday Night Football increased viewership by 8%. However, ESPN is very protective of any metrics resulting from this rebrand so we are unable to give stats.

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