Monday, June 19, 2006

The 1984 Apple Commercial

This old news was recently new to me.

When Apple launched the personal computer in January of 1984 it ran this advertisement during the third quarter of Superbowl XVII January 22nd, 1984.

Obviously the commercial was based on Orwell's play 1984 about Big Brothers watching over our every move.

The Commercial was directed by Ridley Scott after he filmed Blade Runner (obviously the commercial looks more like Blade Runner than his next project A Good Year)

Anya Major the runner in the commercial was chosen because most actresses and models could not throw the hammer and she was an experienced discuss thrower. Her only other credit to her name is as "Nikita" in an Elton John video. (via wikipedia)

Creative director Lee Clow was responsible for this ad and he also did other famous ads later that were a little more annoying but successful...the energizer bunny and Taco Bell chihuahua campaigns.

The commercial almost wasn't aired at all, even though later it was hailed by adage as the number one commercial of the decade.

Watch it yourself, or re-watch it if you haven't seen it since 1984.

most info via wikipedia. more can be found there.

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Paula said...

Wow. That is a great commercial!

Gordon Hackman said...

Thanks for posting this. I have a memory of seeing this as a relatively sheltered 12 or 13 year old kid and being totally freaked out and blown away by it. It is a great little piece of film. I had never known it was Ridley Scott, but it makes total sense in the wake of Blade Runner.

Also, I saw your earlier post on Everything is Illuminated. I just watched it with some friends about a week ago and really, really liked it. A great and powerful film.


Jim Jannotti said...


That commercial still sends chills up my spine just like it did in 1984, (I was a freshman in college then). It really is closer to a film scene than a commercial, which augments its power.

laura capello said...

I have a degree in Advertising, and all my professors Would. Not. Shut. Up. About. That. Commercial.

I think it is actually more famous for never being aired again more than the content. But it's really a good commercial.

(We also got to see a Hawaiian Punch commercial from the early 90s that went so over budget -- over one million -- that they couldn't afford to ever show it.)

Kimberly Ann said...

ditto to capello, above. i too was an advertising major and we were forced to watch this (well not forced, it is a good commercial) many times over during lectures about the importance of sticking to a budget and having an orignal and timeless idea.

Attila the Mom said...

I remember this! Boy don't I feel old!

Anonymous said...

Ahhh....Apple. Creativity Incarnate.

And such clever commercials, too. Still.

Wow, had no idea the same creative director also worked on Engergizer (fantastic campaign!) and Taco Bell. I guess he works well with animals.

Anonymous said...

Make that EnERgizer. I really can spell.

2complx said...

WOW. I don't remember seeing this. Real creative of course Apple usually is. Nikita I remember that good video cute girl.

AWG said...

I remember it quite well. '84 was a pretty big year for stuff like that.

elea said...

remember it.

loved it then.

love it now.

still love my mac.

poppedculture said...

There was a great version of it on Futurama when they made over Planet Express with a guy unthawed from the '80s. Ant bless YouTube, they had a link:
It happens in the first few seconds.

Anonymous said...

check this out :