Team Canada Wants Canadians to ‘Be Olympic’
As national teams around the world prepare to compete at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea, Team Canada has unveiled a bold campaign that will surely get Canadian sports fans even more excited for the Games.
Its new brand platform, consisting of powerful short films, photographs and stories based on athletes’ experiences, prompts Canadians to embrace shared national values and think about what it means to ‘Be Olympic.’
“This is more than a campaign for us,” said Chris Overholt, chief executive officer of the Canadian Olympic Committee. “[Team Canada] is about inclusion and diversity, and the values of accountability, excellence, respect, fun and bravery.”
The focal point of the campaign is a highly cinematic TV spot entitled “Virtue and Victory,” developed by creative services firm Sid Lee. The video features Olympians Denny Morrison (speed skating); Maxime, Chloé and Justine Dufour-Lapointe (freestyle skiing); Meagan Duhamel and Eric Radford (figure skating); Mark McMorris (snowboard); and Hayley Wickenheiser, Vicky Sunohara and Caroline Ouellette (ice hockey). Each vignette depicts a specific moment from each athlete’s sporting career.
“The values of overcoming challenges, persevering when faced with adversity and adapting to unwanted change are all encompassed by the slogan,” said Morrison, who suffered a fractured femur in a 2015 motorcycle accident and a stroke in 2016 during a 25-day bicycle ride from Arizona to Utah. At the 2014 Sochi Olympics, Morrison’s teammate, Gilmore Junio, gave up his spot in the 1000 metre event to allow Morrison to compete, a move that he described as “a brilliant moment of sportsmanship and teamwork.”
“Virtue and Victory” ends with a shot of Wickenheiser, Sunohara and Ouellette, who are widely credited with expanding the popularity of women’s ice hockey worldwide.
“[Being an Olympian] is a way of life; it’s not just when you compete,” said Sunohara. “Now I have twin eight-year-olds and I’m coaching a team at the University of Toronto; I feel like I have a responsibility of passing those values on.”