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Ad of the Day: Channel 4 Paralympics push proves being 'Superhuman' is a state of mind


By Gillian West, Social media manager

July 15, 2016 | 2 min read

Channel 4 has followed up its award-winning London 2012 ‘Meet the Superhumans’ campaign with another inspiring push for Rio 2016 – ‘We’re the Superhumans’.

Launched as part of Channel 4’s 2016 Year of Disability, the three-minute long film features a cast of more than 140 disabled people – including Paralympic athletes, musicians and members of the public – and celebrates the abilities of people with a range of impairments.

Described as an “unbridled celebration of ability” by Channel 4 chief marketing and communications officer, Dan Brooke, the campaign is believed to include more disabled people than ever before featured in a UK ad, and will be the most accessible campaign ever produced by Channel 4 with subtitled, signed and audio described versions available.

“With our unique remit to champion diversity, innovation and new talent, the Paralympics is a public services bullseye for Channel 4,” Brooke said. “This campaign is the most important we have ever undertaken and isn’t just about Rio, it’s about revolutionising public attitudes to disability forever.”

Created by Channel 4’s in-house 4Creative team and directed by Blink Productions’ Dougal Wilson, the ad’s soundtrack – ‘Yes I Can’ by Sammy Davis Jr – was re-recorded by a specially assembled band of disabled musicians from around the world, The Superhumans Band. The film will also be accompanied by a poster campaign shot by Nadav Kander which features both Paralympians and disabled members of the public.

Alice Tonge, creative director at 4Creative, commented: “In Britain where everything seems a bit less certain, and, at times, less caring, we wanted to create a huge powerful Superhuman message of positivity. Whether you’re blind and you’re running at the Rio Paralympics or you’re a double leg amputee and you’ve got to get the bus every morning to work, being a Superhuman is a state of mind. It’s time to stop focusing on disability and focus on superability instead.”

The Rio 2016 Paralympic Games form the centrepiece of Channel 4’s 2016 Year of Disability which included major on and off screen commitments to improving representation of disabled people. During the Games more than 700 hours of sport will be broadcast across Channel 4 platforms fronted by the largest ever team of disabled presenters on UK television.

Channel 4: advert-body-2 by 4Creative

By Channel 4

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