Guinness ‘Compton Cowboys’

Guinness advertising is iconic and they have an unrivalled collection of awards to prove it. The company launches a new campaign biennially around their Made of More strategy and they haven’t dropped the ball yet. We were approached by their agency AMV/BBDO to use our extensive networkof filmakers, journalists and tastemakers to gather unique and exciting stories from which the client and agency could pick their favourite around which Guinness could base their 2018/19 global campaign. The brief was clear and challenging! The story had to be equal to or surpass their last campaign: the brilliant and iconic ‘Sapeurs’… No easy task.

We undertook an extensive research project, scouring the globe to unearth around 100 potential inspirational Made of More stories from all walks of life which we then whittled down to 25 of our favourites. The agency shortlisted five to present to the client but right from the moment we discovered them, Compton’s cowboys were the shining stars.

LA’s Compton district is known worldwide as a particularly dangerous and difficult place to live. The young men in this film are incredible for so many reasons and are part of a rich heritage of African American cowboys that history writers omitted from their romanticised ‘Wild West’. There are little known community stables in many of the toughest areas of American cities which get huge amounts of support from the local community and which empower young people to stay away from the destructive cycle of gangs and violence. Truly a brilliant story worth telling. Guinness fell in love with the story so we made an initial and delicate approach to one of the cowboys and then handed over the contact to the agency and production company. The resulting film by director Henry Alex Rubin is a stunning record of these pioneering guys and their dedication to their passion. Definitely one to watch for awards season.