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Sun Creature at the Superbowl

Sun Creature at the Superbowl

Art and character design by Sun Creature Studio for the Love, Death + Robots episode Alternate Histories

WeAnimate 2024-02-05 | wam#0028

The Danish studio and PSYOP’s Coca-cola co-op.

Ad time during the Super Bowl is some of the most expensive in the world, where the world’s biggest brands market their products as eyes the world over are fixed on the football showdown. Coca-Cola has a long history with the sporting event with 2019 marking the brand’s 13th year in a row at the Big Game.

Coca-Cola’s 2019 commercial comes from the fruitful collaboration between American PSYOP and Danish Sun Creature Studio, known for such diverse productions as the BAFTA-nominated fantasy comedy The Heroic Quest of the Valiant Prince Ivandoe (2017-) and a recent campaign for League of Legends.

Directed by Kylie Matulick, Todd Mueller and Trevor Conrad of PSYOP, Sun Creature Studio became attached to the project to handle the 2D animation through Guillaume Dousse, who collaborated with Mueller and Matulick on pitch material and subsequently worked as executive producer and art director on the project. The two studios’ shared storytelling sensibility lent itself to a fruitful and taxing collaboration, dominated by a demanding client and a rewarding production.

Promoting a pre-game message of diversity, inclusivity and sugary goodness under the title A Coke is a Coke, the ad starts in the bubbling blackness before zooming out of the bottle and flying through a variety of different characters from all walks of life as they all enjoy the drink. The characters come in all shapes and sizes, ranging from the realistic to wildly fantastical – the cast includes everything from an astronaut, a sasquatch and a vagabond, who shares a moment with a farmer and a jet-set starlet bird. The overall image is one of unity, harmony, and diversity, spiced with a sense of whimsy and playfulness.

The dazzling trip through the cast is bound in a poem, which highlights the universality of the drink, a point underscored by the relay of different voices, that all chime in. The poem is inspired by Andy Warhol remarking on how Coke is the same for everyone from the President to a bum. The pop artist was, however, not a point of reference for the visual style of the ad, which was gradually honed in on through an incredibly intense development process, dominated by a feeling of continuous forward momentum.

The staff at Sun Creature Studio produced 100+ pages of content in dialogue with the project’s three directors, designing a plethora of characters with very few guiding principles beyond the requisite diversity. Due to the drastic difference between the characters, there was little backtracking with artists returning to their previous designs. Ultimately, the scores of characters selected, many of which are only visible for less than a second, represent a broad swath of ethnicities and orientations, illuminating the overall message of the ad:


A coke tastes the same no matter who you are, what you look like, what you believe, or who you love.

Concept art by Sun Creature Studio

A result of many long nights with 30-40 people working simultaneously with Sun Creature Studio, the final product is quite close to the original pitch, with the structuring speak remaining constant throughout the process and its visual style rooted in the minimalist brown, red, black and white palette intrinsic to the Coke-brand.

Since commencing work on A Coke is a Coke, Sun Creature Studio has collaborated with PSYOP on the League of Legends Championship campaign and Travel Oregon – Only Slightly Exaggerated, where a broad color palette and Ghibli-inspired tableaus paint a magical picture of the beaver state. Recently finished projects include the humorous multiverse romp Alternate History episode of the Netflix anthology-show Love Death + Robots and a sequel to Travel Oregon. With an exciting slate of upcoming projects such as the upcoming feature documentary film Flee, there are plenty of reasons to pay attention to the Danish studio.


Hitler is the kind of person you're usually pretty careful about treating, especially when he is your main character. But it was so far out from reality that it felt OK for us to go in this cathartic process of killing him not once but six times.

—Guillaume Dousse on producing the Love, Death + Robots episode ‘Alternate Histories’ for Netflix 

Art and character design by Sun Creature Studio for the Love, Death + Robots episode Alternate Histories


Written by Niels Harpøth


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