Documentary filmmaking has the ability to influence public policy, create cross-cultural empathy, and make everybody hate SeaWorld. And now the powerful medium is being used for a new purpose: selling Coca-Cola.
Specifically, the new documentary from Matthew Miele (Scatter My Ashes At Bergdorf’s) and Justin Bare will explore the history of the glass Coke bottle just in time for its 100th anniversary.While the film is being produced by Miele’s Quixotic Endeavors, The Hollywood Reporter notes, “The Coca-Cola Company has blessed the project and will help pay for marketing.” This means the film likely won’t explore Coca-Cola’s anti-union sentiments, but it probably will feature those adorable polar bear ads.
The documentary will not only explore the production history of the bottle, but also “its influence on pop art, cinema, artists, including the late Andy Warhol, fashion, music, business, advertising and design.” As Miele puts it, “When I can hold up a Coca-Cola bottle and ask, ‘is this art or is this commerce?’ and most commonly hear ‘it’s both,’ that sets the stage for an intriguing narrative.” Hopefully the film will also document the odd looks Miele gets as he demands his friends share their thoughts on food packaging.
According to Coca-Cola’s (fantastically titled) vice president of sparkling brands Katie Bayne, the company will give the filmmakers access to “great stories” from Coca-Cola, including some that “have never been heard before.” Presumably, Coke is a little happier about this upcoming documentary than they were about 2009’s The Coca-Cola Case, which explored accusations that the company killed 10 union leaders in its Colombian bottling plant.