Best of 2017 TV/Film--No. 3: African-American Moms Teach Their Kids How to Stand Up to Racism in P&G's Heart-Rending Film

Latest From Marketer's 'Black Is Beautiful Campaign' Is a Difficult Story, Beautifully Told

By Ann-Christine Diaz. Published on Jul 24, 2017

Editor's Pick

Through New Year's, we'll be counting down the best work of the year in TV/Film/Branded Content, Print/Outdoor/Design and Interactive/Integrated (IX) as our picks of the day.

At No. 3 in TV/Film, Procter & Gamble lived up to its "Proud Sponsor of Moms" mantle when it debuted this poignant film that shed light on the particular challenges faced by African-American mothers. It shows how struggles we may have thought were left in the past remain a heartbreaking reality today. Various vignettes depict how mothers balance their fears with hope as they nurture their children in an uncertain world. BBDO New York created the spot, directed by Malik Vitthal via Corner Shop.

Original Story:

Procter & Gamble is both "Proud Sponsor of Moms" and supporter of African-American women, with its ongoing "My Black Is Beautiful" campaign. These concerns merge in the marketer's heart-rending film about the unique challenges African-American mothers have in raising kids -- in decades past, and continuing today.

Scenes that take place over different eras depict moms consoling and educating their children after they encounter racism: one daughter receives a compliment that she's pretty -- "for a black girl," a boy gets called the n-word while another has faced discrimination on the sports field.

The mothers encourage their kids to endure and hold their heads up high, no matter what the challenges. One mom tells her daughter she'll do fine at science camp, but she'll have to "work twice as hard and be twice as smart," and the mother with the "pretty" daughter drives home that she's "beautiful, period."

But there are other fears as well, ones that the women may have little control over. One mom insists that her son take his ID with him to music practice, because it will be late when he returns home. Then a young woman at the steering wheel tells her mother she need not worry because she's a "good driver," but that's not what Mom's real concern is.

Unlike many other socially-conscious ads, the film, entitled "The Talk," doesn't sugarcoat with assurances that things will only get better. It's inspiring yet filled with an unsettling uncertainty -- a thoughtful marketing approach that's sure to promote real conversation.

BBDO New York created the ad, and Malik Vitthal of The Corner Shop directed.

P&G introduced the "My Black Is Beautiful" campaign a decade ago, with the goal of helping black women and girls feel confident about themselves, and in the process, develop a stronger bond with black consumers. The marketer intends this latest ad to open about a broader discussion about discrimination among a spectrum of communities. Further films on the accompanying website for "The Talk" show how real people have dealt with negative bias in their everyday lives.

"We know that bias is not just an African American issue," said Damon Jones, director of global company communications of Proctor & Gamble in a statement. "It's an issue that takes on many shapes and forms, across gender, race, age, weight, sexual orientation, and more. Our goal with 'The Talk' is to help raise awareness about the impact of bias. We are also hopeful that we can make progress toward a less biased future by recognizing the power of people of all backgrounds and races showing up for one another."

Rate this Ad

You must be registered to rate this ad.
Please Login or Register Now



Jul 24, 2017
BBDO New York
Chief Creative Officer, Worldwide:
David Lubars
Procter & Gamble
Chief Creative Officer:
Greg Hahn
Creative Director:
Marcel Yunes
Creative Director:
Rick Williams
Associate Creative Director:
Nedal Ahmed
Nedal Ahmed
Associate Creative Director:
Bryan Barnes
Art Director:
Bryan Barnes
Global Account Leader:
Anita May
Global Planning Director:
Sangeet Pillai
Director of Integrated Production:
Dave Rolfe
Executive Producer:
Dan Blaney
Senior Producer:
Whitney Collins
Executive Music Producer:
Melissa Chester
Senior Integrated Business Manager:
Matt Friday
Malik Vitthal
Production Company:
The Corner Shop
Malik Vitthal
Executive Producer:
Anna Hashmi
Director of Photography:
Lasse Frank
Production Designer:
Wynn Thomas
Costume Designer:
Isis Mussenden
Jessica Miller
Head of Production:
Jessica Miller
Line Producer:
Stephen Love
Line Producer:
Blake Pickens
Editorial Company:
Work Editorial
Lead Editor:
Rich Orrick
Theo Mercado
Jamie Lynn Perritt
Executive Producer:
Erica Thompson
The Mill
2D Lead:
Jeff Robins
Sophie Mitchell
Executive Producer:
Rachael Trillo
Pulse Music
Julia Piker
Dan Kuby
Steve Grywalski
Executive Producer:
Dan Kuby
Sound Design:
Trinitite Studios
Sound Designer:
Brian Emrich
Mixing Studio:
Heard City
Phil Loeb
Keith Reynaud
Sasha Awn
Andi Lewis
Color Grade:
Company 3
Clare Movshon
Alex Lubrano
Sofie Borup
Multicultural Strategic Communications:
Egami Consulting Group
Hearts & Science
Barefoot Proximity
Burrell Communications
Chief Brand Building Officer:
Marc Pritchard
Kristine Decker
Associate Brand Director:
Betsy Bluestone
Brand Manager:
Verna Coleman-Hagler
Senior Manager Communications:
Crystal Harrell
Randall Smith
John Lick
Brittany Body

Need a credit fix? Contact the Creativity Editors

The Creativity Newsletter

The Creativity newsletter is editorially curated to spotlight the work that’s hitting the mark—or missing it altogether. Sign up to have it sent to your inbox.