21.02.2017 The Atlantic : Backlash Brands : Journalism
Typecast by The Atlantic and Wieden+Kennedy, New York

Washington D.C. – Inspired by the era of post-truth politics, The Atlantic has launched a campaign that invites people to challenge their assumptions.

  • Starring Michael K Williams, the tv ad shows the actor in conversation with himself as various characters
  • The film invites the audience to question the extent of the power they have over the decisions they make

Produced in collaboration with creative agency Wieden+Kennedy New York, Typecast features Williams in discussion with four versions of himself on whether he is being typecast because of his background and race.

The various iterations of Williams reference a character he has played in the past, including Omar Little from The Wire and Boardwalk Empire’s Chalky White. The commercial approaches the topic of stereotyping humorously, with Williams asking: ‘Do you think this cat is being typecast? What if he moved to a new neighbourhood. Hung out with a new crowd, did poodle things. You know, become a poodle. Wouldn’t that make him a poodle?’

The short film forms the focal point of the media platform’s new campaign, Question Your Answers, which according to The Atlantic president Bob Cohn, seeks to ‘challenge the received wisdom; we’re open to ideas that mess with our assumptions’.

The Big Picture

During the current period of political unrest, brands are asserting themselves in a bid to promote the qualities that they stand for. For more, see our Backlash Brands macrotrend.

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