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Ad of the Day: Harry Styles reimagines Apple’s iconic ‘Silhouettes’ campaign


By Kendra Barnett, Associate Editor

June 2, 2022 | 3 min read

Apple today unveiled a clever new spin on its famed ‘Silhouettes’ campaign. Featuring pop’s golden child Harry Styles, the new iteration spotlights AirPods with Spatial Audio.

airpods ad

Apple and Harry Styles restyle an old classic / Apple

An ode to the original 2003 campaign created by TBWA\Chiat\Day, the ads hit screens just weeks after Apple announced it’s cutting the cord on all iPods and will no longer sell the once-coveted devices. The original campaign featured black silhouettes of people dancing against brightly-colored backdrops, sporting the ultra-recognizable white outline of an iPod attached to wired earbuds. The campaign was splashed across billboards in Los Angeles, and followed up with placements across print and TV nationwide. The TV spots were made memorable with lively tunes by the likes of the Black Eyed Peas and N.E.R.D.

‘Silhouettes’ was released at a time when Apple — and the iPod specifically — sat squarely at the heart of our cultural consciousness. After U2 frontman Bono endorsed the product, telling the Chicago Tribune it was “the most beautiful object art in music culture since the electric guitar,” Apple’s stock price spiked to a 52-week high of $53.20 a share.

Now, the iconic color-block imagery has evolved — the silhouettes in the new spot are as brightly cast as their backdrops, and instead of iPods, dancers are adorned with the unmistakable image of Apple AirPods. To represent the product’s Spatial Audio feature, which promises surround-sound, theater-like audio experiences, Styles himself is seen dancing and singing in trippy multiples of his own image — making the viewer feel like the sound is coming from all around them. ‘Music for a Sushi Restaurant,’ a song off Styles’ newly-released third studio album ‘Harry’s House,’ serves as the soundtrack.

Airpods ad

The new campaign, created by TBWA\Media Arts Lab with production from Iconoclast and Versatile, adds to Apple’s tradition of partnering with larger-than-life music talent. In that past, the tech brand has created campaigns and activations with stars including Paul McCartney, Bob Dylan, U2 and Coldplay.

The ads will run on TV, YouTube and will see additional out-of-home and retail store placements across the US.

Per Styles’ request, Apple donated the artist’s would-be artist fee to the nonprofit organization International Rescue Committee, which works to alleviate humanitarian crises around the world.

Interested in creative campaigns? Check out our Ad of the Day section and sign up to our Ads of the Week newsletter so you don’t miss a story.

Apple: Silhouettes by TBWA\Chiat\Day

By Apple

Overall Rating 4/5

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