We specialize in building content brands for our clients. These programs and their ideas live-on for years and accrue value over time in ways that advertising simply cannot. A few example projects are below and all of the work is still live – click out to the links at the bottom of each synopsis to fully explore.
2011 – 2013 GE FOCUS FORWARD FILMS
– Short Films, Big Ideas
An integrated influence campaign executed with precision on a worldwide scale. At its core, GE FOCUS FORWARD is a series of 30 three-minute films created by Oscar®, Emmy and festival award-winning directors like Alex Gibney, Steve James, Jessica Yu, Morgan Spurlock, Stanley Nelson, Albert Maysles and Leslie Iwerks; the stories are about innovative people and technologies that are making the world a better place. To date the program has delivered over 150 million views, 4 billion media impressions, 130+ screening events including Tribeca, Sundance, Berlinale, IDFA, Melbourne International Film Festival, Dubai, Doha and dozens more. Greater than 4 billion media impressions and awards and honors from Cannes Lions, Webbys, Clios, Tribeca Disruptive Innovation Foundation, LIA Gold.
Concurrently, GE FOCUS FORWARD launched the largest competition ever for short, non-fiction films. Using the same brief given to our 30 commissioned filmmakers, the GE FOCUS FORWARD filmmaker competition drew 563 entries from 69 countries. The 5 winners were announced at the Sundance Film Festival and the films have drawn millions of views online. You can review the entire program in detail at www.focusforwardfilms.com.
2013 – GE Rise of the Machines :90s (Silver State, Brilliant Grid)
– Short Films, Big Ideas
In September of 2013 we partnered with GE and CNBC to launch the docu-series titled Rise of the Machines. GE as lead sponsor had the rights to all of the advertising space for the entire broadcast hour. They didn’t want to run ads, they wanted to tell stories through film in-line with the editorial content of the CNBC series. Theorem Studios researched, developed and produced :90 short films for each ad-break for the hour with our friends and colleagues, Directors Kief Davidson, Jessica Yu and Ross Kauffman, each is a unique interpretation and answering of the same question “When is a machine brilliant?”.
2014 – We The Economy
– 20 Short Films You Can’t Afford to Miss
WE THE ECONOMY – 20 Short Films You Can’t Afford to Miss is a film series developed in partnership with Paul G. Allen’s Vulcan Productions. WTE asks and answers 20 critical questions about the fundamentals of the US economy. The questions were developed by economic thought leaders like Greg Ip (The Economist), Neil Irwin (New York Times), Diane Lim (Pew Charitable Trust) and the films were directed by some of the best storytellers in the world including Catherine Hardwicke (Twilight), Adam McKay (Anchorman, Talladega Nights) and Morgan Spurlock (CNN’s Morgan Spurlock Inside Man, Super Size Me) along with actors such as Amy Poehler, Sarah Silverman, Adrian Grenier, Bob Balaban and dozens more. The films launched simultaneously at the New York Film Festival, in 20 Landmark Theaters in the largest 20 US markets and on 65 TV and digital platforms including Netflix, YouTube, Amazon, Yahoo!, Facebook, Comcast, Time Warner and iTunes. The films received over 5 million views in the first 48 hours in the U.S. alone, and over 25 million views in the first 12 weeks. We stopped counting at 70million views. www.wetheeconomy.com
2015 – BNY Mellon Clock of the Long Now
In 2015, we engaged with BNY to explore how they might begin to use the power of film to strengthen their positioning. They were asking themselves a question: How can BNY MELLON define and begin to take ownership of a concept as large and sweeping as invested? We took a run at this very large idea with our regular collaborators at Public Record. They had an amazing idea about what some of the top minds in the country were working on: Something most people were calling “The Clock”…
2015 – Microsoft Design – Inclusive Design
Diversity is the world’s greatest asset, and inclusion is our biggest challenge. In 2015 The Microsoft Design Team was asking themselves one thing: How do we augment or transform our traditional design practices to become more inclusive? With the ubiquity of technologies in our everyday lives, designers must create adaptive solutions that address a person’s permanent, situational and temporary constraints. Designing for inclusivity not only opens up products and experiences to more people with a wider range of abilities, it also reflects how people really are. All humans are growing, changing, and adapting to the world around them every day; product designs should reflect that diversity. To make these complex concepts accessible, we found incredible leaders in the field including Jutta Treviranus, Susan Gottesman, Graham Pullin, TJ Parker and others. We produced a 21-minute film, and a companion series of shorts perfect for presentation usage for the Microsoft Design team to educate and inspire designers around the world. The director is the ever-thoughtful Miao Wang.
2016 – Toyota Effect
The story of TSSC – a division of Toyota that gives away their production system to non-profits and non-competitive manufacturing operations to help them understand and embrace “Kaizen” – the management philosophy of Continuous Improvement – as a way to better their operations and the lives of those they support.
The three short films world premiered at the New York Film Festival and received over 10 million views on Vimeo and YouTube in 6 weeks.
2017 – Microsoft Public Sector
In 2017 we consulted with Microsoft Public Sector to evaluate the fundamental shift in the nature of technology today. We explored Microsoft projects, partnerships and activities across 6 continents in order to identify those which best represented their belief in the vital nature of what they are calling the “4th industrial revolution”. This watershed moment in our development marks the beginning of enormous change at a high rate speed. We formed a strategic storytelling framework that aligned Microsoft initiatives around the world with the UN Strategic Development Goals – an evolution of the historic UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights. We discovered, researched and developed over 75 stories for Microsoft, and this one was so good we flew to Uganda and made the film. Director – Ross Kauffman
2018 – Toyota Pilots (T3; Toyota Untold; Kids Explaining)
In 2018 our colleagues at Toyota were going through a lot of change. They re-organized both the marketing and communication departments and combined their New York and L.A. offices into one new HQ in Plano, TX. They wanted to understand how to efficiently and effectively combine and internalize a lot of their storytelling initiatives, without loosing the creative impact. This was a significant change that required enormous investment and commitment from their leadership teams and reflected a deep-rooted desire to inspire Toyota employees to embrace the full potential of the new organization. It was also a tremendous amount of fun. We developed three distinct content brands that Toyota has since internalized with great success. The project drew over 1 million online views and pulled in over 2 million new visitors to the Toyota Newsroom in just four months.
2019 – Camille & Henry Dreyfus Foundation
The Camille and Henry Dreyfus Foundation share our belief that audiences want to be inspired, not messaged. Working in partnership with the Foundation, we developed a content brand to activate their mission statement that included two short films, an editorial matrix and partnership, educational use and sponsorship strategies for a long-term self-sustaining flow of content all about chemistry for the Foundations constituents. If you think about anything you can hear, see, smell, taste, or touch, and you’ll find chemistry. From food security and access to clean water to environmental pollution and human health – humanity faces many challenges to which chemistry can help provide creative solutions. We produced two films, one about David Liu and CRISPR 2.0 at the Broad Institute titled REWRITING LIFE (Director, Kelly Nyks), and one about incredible advancements being made by Zhenan Bao at Stanford in the field of polymers and synthetic skin titled UNDER THE SKIN (Director, Miao Wang).
2019 – Toyota Project Portal at the G20
In 2019, the sustainability track for the G20 meeting was in Osaka, Japan. Delegates from all over the world descended upon this historic venue to discuss innovations with the potential for the biggest impact on our environment. Toyota was given the opportunity to present their hydrogen fuel cell truck: Project Portal, along with an explainer film to run alongside the truck during the summit so that the 20,000+ attendees from 135 countries could understand how the truck worked. A truck that cleans the air as it drives. Instead of a diesel engine, this Class 8 truck is powered by a hydrogen fuel cell electric system. In this fuel cell, the oxygen is combined with hydrogen to create electricity – a lot of electricity. Enough electricity to drive a 560-horsepower electric motor that can propel the heavy-duty truck for up to 300 miles. All, while emitting no smog, no soot. Only pure water. So we worked with our friends at Public Record to tell the story of this truck to the world. Oh, one more thing, we had to do it without using language, no voice-over, universal imagery only. This project was an absolute honor to develop and deliver.
2020 – Theorem Media / CyberNation
In 2020 we launched Theorem Media — a new and dynamic 501(c)3 that believes 21st Century problems require 21st Century solutions. We know that entertainment has the power to educate, and this educational non-profit has a culture-driven approach puts humanity at the center of the digital age. Theorem Media’s first program, CyberNation, focuses on the emergence of cyberspace and its impact on our collective safety and security. Using popular formats such as short films, podcasts, and social media, CyberNation addresses questions of artificial intelligence, the balance of innovation with responsibility, and what it means to be a good digital citizen.