Ad Nut
Jan 18, 2024

Sailing with splendour: Dentsu Creative cruises in luxury in new global campaign

Sojourns under a splendid summer sun afloat a luxury cruise upon the depths of the European seas? Yes please and thank you, says Ad Nut.

Ahhhhh, vacations: That blissful time off amongst the grind of daily life, work, meetings that could've been emails, bills, family obligations, social events (both voluntarily and involuntarily attended) and everything that falls in between. And whilst Ad Nut is immune to many of the aforementioned pressures by virtue of you know, being a squirrel and all that, Ad Nut has no shortage of being surrounded by many a human experiencing the turmoils of what it means to survive in the big bad world today, seeking a moment of peace, relaxation and joy.

Enter MSC Cruises. Set to be an experience that will delight even the most picky of holiday goers, the contemporary brand of the MSC Group's Cruise Division in Europe has partnered with Dentsu Creative in Italy to launch a new global integrated marketing campaign titled "For a Greater Beauty." The campaign aims to promote conscious cruising focused on a deep respect for the ocean and the planet, and urging audiences to discover the joys of cruising in a mindful way. It will be rolled out in over 30 countries worldwide, including Singapore, China and Japan, through various marketing channels across TV, out-of-home, print media, digital, and social media.

The centrepiece of the endeavour: A minute-long film directed by Kiku Ohe—a visual master known for his work across brands like Louis Vuitton, Johnnie Walker and Australian airline Qantas' "I Still Call Australia Home"—showcases the natural grandeur of the seas, down to the perfect shimmer of sunlight dancing down against the boundless and buoyant turquoise waters. Filmed in picturesque locations across the Mediterranean Sea, the ad takes place on the MSC World Europa, one of MSC Cruises' 22 modern ships embedded with a luxury feel, providing international dining, world-class entertainment, family programs, and cutting-edge technology onboard. Choosing to film in 35mm, the campaign aimed to capture the experience with accuracy and 'a touch of poetry'. The result is described as an ode to beauty in all its forms, especially celebrating the vibrancy of the sea across unique destinations like Barcelona, Marseille, Genoa, Naples, Messina, and Malta.

O la la, fancy. Supporting the film are also a number of visuals (for print, OOH and socials) that give rise to that all-too-familiar 'it's time to get away' feeling—complete with panoramic views of the open ocean and pulchritudinous shots of the cruise itself.

Photo: Courtesy of Dentsu Creative Italy
Photo: Dentsu Creative Italy
Photo: Dentsu Creative Italy

Speaking of the creative approach behind the campaign, Riccardo Fregoso, chief creative officer Dentsu Creative Italy, shared in a press release: “It has been an honour to shoot this film in the company of the great director Kiku Ohe, sailing the Western Mediterranean across so many unique destinations: Barcelona, Marseille, Genoa, Naples, Messina, Malta... There’s so much to discover, so much to be amazed at. And this is exactly what we wanted to celebrate with this campaign. We chose to shoot it entirely in 35mm film because we wanted to capture what we were experiencing in the most accurate way while also doing it with a touch of poetry. What we created is an ode to beauty in all its expressions, and especially to the beauty of the sea.” 

And after seeing the result, let Ad Nut tell you, don't be fooled by the stigma around cruises and their reputation as grandma and grandpa's retirement liberation voyage. With boats like this afloat, it's giving champagne, caviar, oysters, and all the Succession mega yacht vibes of our modern millennial dreams—and there's nothing outdated about that.

The only creative element Ad Nut disagrees with: The choice of music and voiceover narration. Whilst the imagery awakens a sense of passion, escapism and drenching oneself in a myriad of expensive lotions as you tan away under the European sun, for Ad Nut, the voiceover and quirky mall-style music distracts from the visual connection to the stunning scenery. A more vibrant, evocative piece of music would've done the job of elevating the senses here, perhaps with text narration to support if necessary.

The charm of this film lies in displaying the simplicity of the wonders both onboard and surrounding the cruise, therefore a play on heightening and building a more emotional experience that stirs up a deep desirability through audio would've sealed the deal for Ad Nut, on what is otherwise a beautifully-shot ad.

Alright, enough chat about that. It's travel time. Ad Nut is off to pack its suitcase—speedos, sunscreen, sunglasses, slippers and all. Sea you there!

Ad Nut is a surprisingly literate woodland creature that for unknown reasons has an unhealthy obsession with advertising. Ad Nut gathers ads from all over Asia and the world for your viewing pleasure, because Ad Nut loves you. You can also check out Ad Nut's Advertising Hall of Fame, or read about Ad Nut's strange obsession with 'murderous beasts'.


Creative Agency: Dentsu Creative Italy

CEO: Emanuele Nenna

Chief Creative Officer: Riccardo Fregoso

Executive Creative Director: Maurizio Tozzini

Executive Creative Director: Giulio Frittaion

Creative Director: Gianluca Nucaro

Creative Director: Stefano Tunno

Lead Art Director: Sonia Montella

Lead Copywriter: Giovanni Luca Orlandi

Art Director: Maria Jose Meola

Copywriter: Santiago Cancela

Motion Designer: Nicolò Frontini

Motion Designer: Matteo Milone

Motion Designer: Silvia Sciotta

Designer: Daniele De Pompeis

Chief Strategy Officer: Niccolò Rigo

Senior Strategist: Sara Pasquinucci

Client Service Director: Mayna Frosi

Client Director: Ilaria Perrone

Client Executive: Thomas Chillemi

Client Coordinator: Tommaso Mangiarotti

Executive Producer & Managing Director: Simona Della Porta

Producer: Giada Sidoti

Post-producer: Alessandra Barbieri

Director: Kiku Ohe

Director of Photography: Tim Lorentzen

Production: BIRTH

CEO & Founder: Hugo Legrand Nathan

EP & Country Manager: Luca Zamboni

EP & Managing Partner: Yohan Ungar

Executive Producers: Stefano Bonfanti, Esha Woottum

Line Producer: Mariella Grandi

1st AD: Jacques Eberhard

2nd AD: Raul Mata

3rd AD: Miguel Peña


Nia: Paula Sanz

Friend 1: Wendy Catherine

Friend 2: Giulia Gonella

Friend 3: Adria Martinez

Couple: Joan Ros & Montserrat Llorenc

Family: Jules Diaw & Family

Casting: Lane Casting & StiCasting

Post Production:

VFX – The Mill Paris: Fabrice Damolini

Head of Post Producer: Anne Segrettin

Edit-Cabin Edit: Alvaro Del Val

Grade – Company 3 London: Yoomin Lee

Music Composer: Hanan Townshend

Voice Researcher: Jesper Gadeberg

Voice: Imelda May

Sound Design: IXYXI

Final Mix: Barking Owl Los Angeles

Scan & Lab: Hiventy France, Cinelab UK, Malaga Lab


XO MGMT, Kodak, Lane Casting, Sticasting, Hiventy Paris, Top Digital, Iggy Post

Campaign Asia

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