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The Converse Chuck Taylor turned 100 years old this year. For the shoe’s centennial, Converse released one of the biggest scale advertising campaigns highlighting how the Chuck has become an anchor across pop-culture.
The first of three episodes featured “Stranger Things” star Millie Bobby Brown and looked at how the shoe defines characters in films.
Chapter two took viewers through Los Angeles culture through the stories of rapper Vince Staples, graffiti artist Spanto, and basketball player Jordan Clarkson. The final installment (watch it in full below) is less specific and looks at the role of creative youth culture in general.
In an interview with Business Insider, Converse chief marketing officer Julien Cahn said: “Our marketing is not for the sake of going after the competition, it’s the way we’ve been behaving as a brand for many, many years.”
The Converse All Star basketball shoe was launched in 1917 by the Converse Rubber Shoe Company. In 1923 the company brought in a basketball player, Charles H. “Chuck” Taylor, who walked in and complained of sore feet. Converse hired him as an ambassador to promote the shoes across the US.
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Today the company doesn’t produce performance basketball shoes anymore and has instead become a pop-culture icon. The instantly recognizable shoe is worn by celebrities, models, athletes and can regularly be seen in movies, music videos, and on TV.
“The Chuck is probably the most important sneaker ever in terms of legacy, what it means, the way it’s attached to the key moments in youth culture for the last couple of decades,” Cahn said.
His strategy has been to build on the culture the sneaker already has. The…