Honda Creates Original Short-Film Documentaries for Corporate Brand Campaign

January 12, 2009


SANTA MONICA, Calif., Jan. 12, 2009 — A national campaign that builds on Honda's corporate theme, "Power of Dreams," begins on Monday, Jan. 12 at The strategy developed by Honda's long–standing advertising agency of record, RPA, is designed to speak to the hearts and minds of consumers by intimately revealing the essence of Honda's corporate philosophy via a multimedia, interactive campaign centered on a highly immersive Web site.

"The new Power of Dreams campaign features documentary footage of real people sharing real stories about Honda's approach to developing solutions to everyday business challenges. These unscripted, emotionally driven films highlight Honda's associates' personal episodes of pursuing ‘impossible dreams,’ which, in reality, are life lessons for all of us," said Barbara Ponce, manager of corporate advertising, American Honda Motor Co., Inc.

The completely redesigned Web site destination,, showcases Honda's "DREAM THE IMPOSSIBLE Documentary Series" by acclaimed director Derek Cianfrance and award-winning producers The Web site features cinematic, full-screen viewing of the films in a clean, uncluttered environment. Users can share and rate the films and subscribe to the Web site.

Three short documentary films (about 6?8 minutes in length) will debut at campaign launch; additional films will be added every few months. Two of the films discuss core values that have inspired generations of Honda associates by telling the stories of impossible engineering challenges and exploring where failure brought Honda and what success came of it. The third film explores the future of mobility.

  • "Kick Out the Ladder" explores the Honda idea of being led up to the roof and kicking out the ladder as a metaphor for being challenged to achieve seemingly impossible goals with stories and anecdotes from Honda associates. The philosophy is used as an "impossible engineering" platform focusing on the story of the new Insight, safety, innovation and U.S. manufacturing with footage of Honda's newest auto manufacturing plant in Greensburg, Ind.
  • "Failure: The Secret to Success" depicts Honda's belief in the importance of never being afraid to try something new. Through personal experiences of Honda associates and those affiliated with Honda, such as IndyCar driver Danica Patrick, the film explores failures and risks taken that helped lead to new innovations.
  • "Mobility 2088" centers on the future of mobility as told by a collection of academics, scientists, sci-fi writers and artists, including film director Christopher Guest. The film asks, "how will people get from point A to point B in 80 years?"

"Ultimately, we hope these films will intrigue and inspire people by giving them a look into Honda's unique philosophy–that impossible dreams can be realized through determination, creativity and hard work," said Todd Carey, associate creative director at RPA.

The collection of films features dozens of interviews including Takeo Fukui, president and CEO of Honda Motor Co., Ltd., and other Honda executives, engineers, and associates.

The campaign targets 25-to-49-year-old adults with a youthful spirit, who are comfortable with technology, who value authenticity, and who are drawn to brands they can relate to, connect with, or admire.

To further connect with independent, entrepreneurial consumers, "Mobility 2088" will air at an exclusive screening before the highly anticipated "Mary and Max" at the Sundance Film Festival. Honda is the exclusive automotive sponsor of the Festival. In addition, ad units will run in-theater at independent theaters nationwide during February and March.

Online media will generate awareness for the campaign, drive traffic to and will aid in creating buzz among consumers. Spots (:30 and :15 spots utilizing footage from the films) will run on full episode players including,, and Hulu. Online media also features high impact units and sponsorships, such as unique page takeovers, roadblocks and pre-roll placements, on relevant Web sites that appeal to the target: technology, news and social media. Executions will launch late January through early February on Wired, Gawker Network, Discovery Channel, Time, Yahoo! and CNN.


Films Chief Creative Officer: David Smith Executive Producer: Barbara Ponce Producers: Gary Paticoff, Curt Johnson, Todd Carey, Frank Stiefel Writers: Todd Carey, Curt Johnson Graphic Designer: Chris Rubino Photographer: Davi Russo Production Co: Line Producer: Andrew Flakelar Director: Derek Cianfrance DP: Andrij Parekh Editorial Company: Outpost Digital Editor: Jim Helton, Ben Coccio Music Company: Q Department Composer: Q Department

Interactive Chief Creative Officer: David Smith Executive Producer, Content: Gary Paticoff Creative Director/Art: Curt Johnson Associate Creative Director/Copy: Todd Carey, J Barbush Associate Creative Director/Art: Luis Ramirez Senior Art Director/Art: David Mesfin Senior Copywriter: Brenna Hajek User Experience Lead: Alex Yra Technology Director: Scott Westerfield Technologist/Flash: Jeff Siegal

About Honda Honda is the world's largest engine maker, producing a vast array of products, including automobiles, motorcycles, power equipment and, jet aircraft – all designed to advance mobility and improve the lives of people through continued innovations in technology and design. For more on Honda visit

Honda's online multimedia newsroom:

About RPA RPA, headquartered in Santa Monica, Calif., is a leading independent advertising agency based on the West Coast, with more than $1 billion in billings. RPA builds momentum for brands by offering its clients truly integrated campaigns that resonate throughout its disciplines, which include traditional advertising, interactive, and direct and event marketing. RPA's client list includes American Honda, both the Honda and Acura brands, La-Z-Boy, Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino, Pharmavite's SOYJOY and PENTAX Imaging Company, and it is the media planning and buying agency for Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Lenox Financial Mortgage and Reily Foods. For more information, visit