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The Super Bowl is known for its non-stop barrage of beer ads. But this year, there will be a new player on the field: Rémy Martin, the cognac from parent company Rémy Cointreau.
And to help the 60-second spot (titled “Inch by Inch”) pop, the company is betting that one of the greatest athletes of all time, Serena Williams, can help get the word out. Teaser trailers for the Inch by Inch campaign debuted Friday, with the full campaign debuting on Super Bowl Sunday.
Williams is no stranger to the Super Bowl (she appeared in a Michelob Ultra ad last year and will do another Caddyshack-inspired spot for the beer brand this year). She tells The Hollywood Reporter that she has a personal connection to Rémy Martin, which she says is a product she “genuinely enjoys.”
“I’m a big hostess and planner in my family, we love to spend time together, and this cognac has been a part of many family game nights and celebrations,” Williams says. “I also love that the brand is founded on family, relationships and teamwork because those are also pillars I value in my life.”
As for her participation in the Big Game, Williams says she has naturally gravitated toward the event, which is a focal point of the pop culture calendar in the U.S., not only for the game but also for the ads that appear within it.
“As an athlete and a competitor, I know the feeling of wanting to perform and be my very best, and I love how sport can bring people together,” she says.
“The Super Bowl is this iconic night where we get to watch competition at the highest level but also experience so much fun and entertainment through the halftime show and world-class campaigns from the most exciting brands,” Williams adds. “I think it’s all about entertainment. People want to laugh and cry and share that experience together. Rémy Martin is a brand that is constantly evolving and seeking ways to reach new generations, and I love that they’ve worked with different musicians, designers, filmmakers and artists. And with the Super Bowl, this is the first time they’ve stepped into the world of sports. I am really excited for audiences to see our spot!”
As for the Inch by Inch campaign itself, Williams and Rémy Martin remain tight-lipped, with the teasers simply introducing Williams’ participation in the spot and teeing up Feb. 12. Williams does say, however, that the ad “spotlights the greatness of teamwork.”
“People think of tennis as a singular sport, but I would have been nothing without my team, and I knew the responsibility I had to lead my team and truly take care of them,” Williams says. “While I can’t give too much away just yet, the spot calls attention to the fact that teamwork is a part of everyday life, sometimes in ways that may not be obvious at first glance. Even when we face challenges, teamwork will be what brings people together and pushes them to new levels of excellence, and this is a message that really aligns with my own values.”
For Rémy Cointreau, the spot continues a trend of using the Super Bowl to propel the French liquor company’s ambitions stateside. The company has previously had ads for its gin brand The Botanist and the French liquor Cointreau but only aired them in select local markets. The Rémy Martin-Serena Williams spot will be its first national effort, debuting in the first quarter of the game — a prime position.
“When developing Inch by Inch, we wanted to create an inspirational concept that transcends time and find a spokesperson that embodies the values of Rémy Martin, which is grounded in an unwavering pursuit of excellence through family, our partners and collective success,” said Jean-Philippe Hecquet, CEO of the House of Rémy Martin, in a statement. “Serena Williams, as the greatest female athlete of all time and a cultural icon, was the perfect choice. She is a global inspiration, and inch by inch, Williams and her team have made history by breaking down barriers, striving for excellence, and achieving greatness. We are honored to partner with her for our first-ever Super Bowl campaign and believe that together Rémy Martin’s quest for excellence will continue to go further, always achieving greater feats.”
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