3 great ads I had nothing to do with #55: Sam Heath

Sam Heath, creative director at VCCP reveals three great ads he admires but had nothing to do with.

Heath joined VCCP London in 2018 after nearly three years as a creative director at Apple where he worked on the global iPhone and Apple Watch brands.

Having previously worked at agencies including Fallon London and Wieden+Kennedy, Heath has almost twenty years of experience in the industry and has worked on accounts including Honda, Lurpak and Cravendale.

His impressive awards haul includes eighteen D&AD Pencils and fifteen Cannes Lions.

Sam's choices

Guinness "Surfer"

Launched in 1999, the iconic "Surfer" ad by AMV BBDO was part of a Diageo campaign to help promote Guinness in the UK using the tagline "Good things come to those who wait".

The 60-second ad, directed by Jonathan Glazer, focuses on a Polynesian surfer successfully tackling a huge wave.

Set to the strains of Leftfield, the ad draws inspiration from Herman Melville's Moby Dick and Walter Crane's 1893 painting Neptune's Horses. It went on to win more awards than any other ad in 1999 – including success at the Clio Awards, D&AD Awards and Cannes Lions.

Super Noodle "Face Off"

A hilarious spoof of the musical 'West Side Story' complete with frenzied soundtrack by Moulin Rouge's Steve Sidwell.

It's a great script from Mother, featuring fat-bellied Super Noodles and his mates doing battle with the wimpish Salad gang. The agency cleverly avoids a crackdown by the watchdog in that there are no real punches, just ridiculous dance moves.

The 2001 ad was directed by Frederik Bond, with creative direction from Robert Saville and Mark Waites of Mother, and produced by Harry Nash.

Levi’s "Twist"

This BBH spot is Levi's advertising at its best: simple, clear and very confident.

Directed by Frank Budgen,  a car pulls up at a roadside diner. A group of friends get out, stretch and unwind - quite literally. It’s a simple showcase of the product: twisted denim cut to fit like a second skin.  Technically speaking, it's incredibly complex, with hours of expensive post-production necessary to make the special effects seamless.

The 2000 ad had creative direction from Stephen Butler and Russell Ramsey, and was produced by Paul Rothwell.

About this series

In this series of short films, leading Thinkbox Academy members have the tricky task of selecting just three TV ads that have inspired them: brilliant commercials, old and new, that they admire but had nothing to do with.

The idea is not only to explore some of our greatest ads in the company of people who know a thing or two about making them, but also, because of the proven link between creativity and effectiveness, to inspire the advertising industry to even greater heights.

About The Thinkboxes 

The Thinkboxes are the first awards to celebrate the UK's world-beating TV ad creativity, in all its forms, at regular way-points throughout the year.

Created in association with Campaign, these bi-monthly awards are judged by the Thinkbox Academy; made up of over 200 advertising luminaries.

We hope you enjoy the films.

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