Soft drink giant Coca-Cola is preparing to launch a series of short films to be aired across Latin America with the help of Oscar-winning activist Dustin Lance Black.
The three anti-bullying short films are directed by Black with one of the films ‘El SMS’ (or ‘The Text’) being centred around LGBT youth.
The seven-minute film The Text is the story of two teenage boys, Rafael and Diego, one of whom is gay.
The two school pals engage in lots of macho banter about sports and girls.
However, Rafael has been keeping a secret, and its revealed that he is gay. The first half of the film makes several hints at his hidden sexuality, setting up the “crossroads moment” when Diego discovers a revealing text on Rafael’s phone whilst hanging out with a bunch of their friends after school.
Speaking with Adweek Black says the response in the LGBT community to the short film The Text was remarkable.
“I heard from Cleve Jones, one of the leaders of the LGBT movement, about how much it moved him,” Black said.
“And these aren’t people I sent it to. They found it, which I find remarkable, since it’s in Portuguese on the Internet.”
“For Coca-Cola to take a pro-diversity, pro-equality stance creates a lot of goodwill in the LGBT community.
“It’s heartwarming for the LGBT community to see that a global brand would embrace this community because, let’s be honest, there are places in the world that know about Coca-Cola where it is still a death sentence to be gay,” explained Black.
Black says that many people are very critical of what the intent of the Coca-Cola brand may have been.
“Yes, their intent was to win a market, and their intent was to sell their product.”
“My intent was to send the message that diversity is a good thing and LGBT people and their families deserve respect and love.”
“I’m not going to skip an opportunity to send a pro-equality message just because they’re selling a product alongside it.”
Black has also recently directed a pro-equality commercial for Tylenol, featuring same-sex couples, which was well received in the United States and also has an upcoming ABC special, When We Rise, which is an eight-hour exploration of the interconnectedness of activists from the LGBT, civil rights, women’s rights, and peace movements.
Last Updated on Aug 21, 2015