Spike Jonze (Where the Wild Things Are) just announced his latest project titled I’m Here, a 30-minute short film about robots in love. It premiered January 20 at the Sundance Film Festival. Fast Company has the scoop on the plot: “Set in a gauzy version of L.A., it’s a love story about a boy and a girl–who also happen to be robots made from what looks like cast-off computer parts from 1994. That conceit allows Jonze to create a quirky, alternate world for their romance. In one scene, for example, the boy plugs in the girl for the night–which manages to become a scene of such delicate intimacy that it makes you squirm a little.”
What’s more intriguing is the way Jonze has mingled the short film with Absolut vodka. A number of cut scenes from the short are incorporated into an Absolut commercial. “This isn’t the first time people have created branded content,” says executive producer Mark Figliulio. “But it’s never really been accepted on its own merits. That’s the grey area we’re trying to explore.” Jonze has directed commercials in the past (The Gap, Adidas, and Miller Beer). “Spike respects the medium,” says second exec producer Matt Bijarchi. “He’s one of the few people that see commercials as an art, and his ad work is every bit as discerning as his features.”
So far the short film has been been accepted into the Sundance, Berlin, and Turkey film festivals. If its popularity continues to grow at the festivals and people show interest in the Absolut commercials the film may find a home in a box set and may even play on a yet to be announced cable channel.