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Martell XO Invites You to Rise Above

COGNAC, France, January 14, 2013 /PRNewswire/ --

After the "Shape your world" campaign that successfully established Martell XO as an ambassador of great achievers around the world, the brand goes one step further with a new, inspiring platform, paying tribute to the legend and heritage of the Cognac House.

The "Wings" TVC will be launched with an uplifting film directed by James Gray, reinforcing the brand's message through an invitation to "Rise Above".

To view the Multimedia News Release, please click:


We all have wings. Few of us know how to use them.

With its new global campaign, '"Rise Above", Martell XO pays tribute to Martell's unique heritage, using its emblem, the swift. 

Legend has it that in 1715, a swift led Jean Martell to Cognac, where, at only 21 years old, he founded what would become the oldest of the great Houses of Cognac.

In this new campaign, the swift becomes a symbol of one's potential to achieve great things - just like Jean Martell nearly 300 years ago.

While we all have the capacity to go higher in life, few of us have the vision and courage to really take off. Martell XO celebrates those who do take off, achieving remarkable, memorable things in life and inspiring the world around them.

As Salvador Dali once put it, "Intelligence without ambition is a bird without wings."

Through the campaign signature 'Rise Above', Martell XO invites us all to spread our wings and take flight.


Anyone who has ever achieved something great will know what it feels like to begin a new project. Weeks, months, even years of preparation will have gone into it. You're alone with your thoughts. It's a tense, exciting moment.  

'Wings', the new Martell XO film directed by James Gray, captures this decisive moment. Four successful individuals (an author, a sculptor, a speaker and a conductor) unfold their "wings", about to begin something significant. It's an exciting yet intimate process of preparation. Concentration is high and the tension is palpable. Then, with a sudden explosion of music, the four men fulfil their vision, while above them, swifts shoot up into the sky.

The film is a glorious celebration of those who achieve greatness, and an invitation to the rest of the world to 'rise above'. Launched on Chinese television in January, the film will be rolled-out worldwide in a stunning 90 second online event format.


Heralded today as one of the most talented directors of his generation, James Gray fully embodies the message of the film in every way.

Gray first found his wings at the age of 25. That was back in 1994, when his directorial debut Little Odessa received the Silver Lion at the Venice Film Festival. Since then, his films Two Lovers, We Own the Night and The Yards have consistently appeared at the Cannes Film Festival.

"James' ability to elevate the genre of cinema is truly remarkable. He immediately struck us as the perfect director to convey our message and meet our ambitions. His quest for excellence, true emotions as well as his dedicated engagement in this project really elevated the experience". Charles Armand De Belenet - Martell Mumm Perrier-Jouët Global Marketing Director.

When it came to collaborating with Martell XO on the film 'Wings', the concept also really struck a chord with Gray. "When I first read the script, I identified completely with the idea of the creative process, and how wonderful and difficult that can be. Obviously as a film director you go through that every day."

The film was Gray's second collaboration with Director of Photography Darius Khondji. Masters of emotion, the two film greats worked together "like brothers", to create tension and release. From little looks and invisible details, to stunning lighting effects and CGI techniques, no stone was left unturned in the process.

Featuring a stunning bespoke soundtrack, performed by members of the London Symphony Orchestra and mixed by Oscar winning sound engineer Etienne Colin, the result is much more than an ad, it is a truly inspiring piece of cinema.


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