Director Wes Anderson’s signature visual style has proven to be a hot commodity in the world of advertising. As such, he’s built up a solid side-career directing commercials and advertisements for lifestyle brands like American Express, Ikea, and Dasani– all of which have eagerly embraced his idiosyncratic aesthetic. In 2010, premium suds brewer Stella Artois added themselves to Anderson’s distinguished list of commercial collaborators by employing his services for a spot called “LE APARTOMATIC”. The piece tells the story of a young bachelor taking his pretty date back to his extravagant pad, which has been built with a wide variety of gadgets and mutating furniture so impressive that she quite literally becomes lost in it. That’s no matter, however, because one of the gadgets has dispensed the perfect chalice of Stella Artois– and that’s all the young bachelor REALLY wants.
“LE APARTOMATIC” is one of the rare projects in which Anderson collaborates with a co-director (his THE DARJEELING LIMITED (2007) writer, Roman Coppola), but his individual stamp ends up dominating every aspect. Anderson’s signature is immediately identifiable from the first shot– the requisite symmetrical, flat compositions, considered dolly movements, top-down insert shots featuring hands are all present and accounted for. The French architecture of the picturesque apartment building seen outside the window speaks to Anderson’s Europhilic affectations, while the handcrafted sense of stagecraft in the form of transforming furniture, complicated machinery, knobs, and dials implies a theatrical proscenium encapsulating our perspective.
All in all, “LE APARTOMATIC” is a bright, breezy, and memorable spot that finds Anderson operating at the height of his commercial powers. In a way, it as much an advertisement for Anderson the artist as it is for delicious beer.
STELLA ARTOIS: “LE APARTOMATIC” is currently available on Youtube via the embed above.