When AMVBBDO launched #BloodNormal for Essity (Bodyform or Libresse, depending on country) in 2017, showing menstrual blood was as dangerous as advertising gets. The partners broke through another stigma in 2018 with Viva La Vulva, pointing out that there is no “perfect” vulva. If you thought there were no more women’s taboos to conquer in advertising, the intrepid duo seems to have taken that as a challenge that they had to conquer. And have.
The new film, #wombstories, rewrites the simplistic fantasy of a woman’s life that runs from the getting your first period and experiencing a bit of pain to being confident regardless, wanting a baby, having one, becoming invisible and reappearing as a grandma. In AMVBBDO’s more realistic story there’s also endometriosis, miscarriage, fertility problems, not wanting children and menopause. The aim, once again, is to air sensitive issues so that the emotional damage that silence and stigma cause is left in the dust of history.
All of this is housed in a montage of six animated sequences and live-action, set to music, that evolves the Viva La Vulva style. Magnificently.
Endometriosis becomes a monster, there’s a gatekeeper who unlocks the flood of menstruation, fertility problems live in a desolate garden. The live-action scenes show real pain, real tragedy, real grief – as well as real sexual pleasure.
The new film was directed by Canadian-American director, writer and producer, Nisha Ganatra, a Golden Globe winner and Emmy nominee and produced by Framestore, which also delivered the VFX.
Tanja Grubner, FemCare global marketing and communications director at Essity, commented, “Although this campaign was conceived long before the pandemic changed everything, the issues women face didn’t just get put on hold or go away because of what was going on around us. In many instances, Covid-19 has increased the isolation women feel and the complexities they experience. The pandemic has seen women forced to give birth alone, have their fertility treatments and endometriosis surgeries delayed and postponed. Now more than ever is a time to ensure women speak up about their bodies and experiences.”
The spot is being supported by a social media campaign which encourages women to share their own experiences.
Agency: AMV BBDO
Executive Creative Directors: Nadja Lossott & Nicholas Hulley
Creative Directors: Toby Allen & Jim Hilson
Director: Nisha Ganatra
TV Producers: Edwina Dennison & Lucia Fioravanti
Art: Fiona Bailey
Design: Mario Kerkstra
Production: Shanah Blevins, Lisa Mehling & Pat Mcgoldrick @ Chelsea Pictures
Post Production: Framestore
Editing: Trim Editing
Creative Director, Animation: Sharon Lock
Animators: Roos Mattar; Kate Isobel Scott & Everyone Agency; Haein Kim; Carine Khalife; Laura Jayne Hodkin @ Strange Beast; Salla Lehmus @ Soja; Annie Wong; Aylin Ohri; Meagan Elemans; Molly Grace Lawton; Georgie Wilemore & Nella Addy
Media Agency: Zenith
Client: Essity (Bodyform/Libresse)
Client Team: Tanja Grubner, Martina Poulopati, Luciana De Azevedo Lara, Traci Baxter and Nicola Coronado from Essity