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ESPN Celebrates the Weird, Wonderful Time Warp That Happens During the World Cup


We're only 16 days away from the start of the World Cup. And ESPN—which will present all 64 matches of the quadrennial tournament across the ESPN, ESPN2 and ABC networks—released its latest teaser commercial on Tuesday, this one devoted to the time warp that happens for viewers around the world every four years.

The spot, by Wieden + Kennedy in New York, feels like the beginning of an action movie where the team is getting together before a big heist—except here, we're seeing how different people around the world are getting ready for the World Cup. And wherever they are in the world, day or night, they'll be setting their countdown clocks to Brazil time.

The spot moves seamlessly from metropolis to metropolis, with business executives, children, fisherman, etc., getting ready for the event. It opens on a favela rooftop in Rio and goes around the world—to a pub in England, a social club in Ghana, a fishing boat off Spain, an apartment in Russia, a car heading to Tehran, a bar about to open at dawn in Japan, an office in Seattle, a family barbecue in Mexico and a research station in the Andes—before returning to Brazil.

"Every 4 years the world has one time zone," says the end line. (That follows a spot earlier this month that said, "Every 4 years the conversation starts again.")

Thanks to our longitudinal proximity to Brazil, Americans will see the matches at exceedingly humane hours, with kickoffs generally scheduled for noon, 3 p.m. or 6 p.m. ET. That's a lot better than other recent World Cups—in particular, the 2002 tournament in Japan and South Korea, whose daily slate of matches began at 2:30 a.m. and wrapped up shortly after breakfast.

Client: ESPN

Agency: Wieden + Kennedy, New York
Creative Directors: Brandon Henderson, Stuart Jennings, Gary Van Dzura, Caleb Jensen
Art Director: Mathieu Zarbatany
Copywriter: Andrew Jasperson
Producer: Luiza Naritomi
Executive Producer: Temma Shoaf
Account Team: Casey Bernard, Katie Hoak, Alex Scaros

Production Company: Imperial Woodpecker
Director: Stacy Wall
Executive Producer: Doug Halbert
Line Producer: Terry Shafirov
Director of Photography: Corey Walter

Editorial Company: Final Cut
Editor: Jeff Buchanan
Assistant Editor: Geoff Hastings
Post Producer: Beth Fitzpatrick

Visual Effects Company: MPC
Senior Producer: Matthew Loranger
Lead Flame Artist, Creative Director: Gigi Ng

Mix Company: Heard City
Mixer: Philip Loeb
Producer: Sasha Awn

Music Company: Travis + Maude
Creative Director: David Wittman
Producer: Kala Sherman

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