Ad Age | See how Budweiser is bringing Clydesdales back to the Super Bowl

The iconic horses return to the big stage in commercial directed by Chloé Zhao that also stars a yellow lab
Press February 2, 2022

Budweiser is returning to a familiar emotional formula as it comes back to the Super Bowl after taking last year off—an ad that stars a Clydesdale and a dog.

The spot, directed by Academy Award-winner Chloé Zhao and from VaynerMedia, shows a Clydesdale galloping through an open Western landscape before tripping on a barbed wire fence, suffering a leg injury. A yellow lab looks on, barking its concern. A stableman and vet nurse the horse back to health (and drink Budweisers in one scene). The final scene shows the Clydesdale charging out of its stable, with the dog running to greet it, as the phrase “In the home of the brave down never means out” appears onscreen. The soundtrack includes a rendition of the National Anthem from guitarist Gary Clark Jr.

The ad, released today as an extended 60-second cut, will run as a 30-second version in the game.

The storyline is meant to serve as a parable for America, as the nation attempts to recover from pandemic-induced hard times. The brand wanted to “make sure that this message of American resiliency, told through the Clydesdales, really came through,” said Daniel Blake, group VP of marketing for Budweiser and value at the U.S. division of Anheuser-Busch InBev. “The Clydesdales—it’s a symbol of America and it’s a symbol of American strength. And through this story we are able to tell this unifying message, hopefully bringing America together.”

With VFX and Colour by The Mill.

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