There are a few moments in life that define us from that moment forward. If you have a few decades behind you, you might remember the day that John Kennedy was shot or perhaps you remember the first steps on the moon. In more recent history, we have an event that people remember very clearly. It was the day of the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon on September 11. More than likely, you not only remember it but you remember clearly where you were and what you were doing when it happened.
There are many ways that we might commemorate that day, and it has been the subject of many documentaries and videos, both online and offline. It was also the subject of a Budweiser advertisement that featured the Clydesdale horses. They honored the victims and families in the commercial by showing a wagon being pulled toward Manhattan. You can’t help but be moved by the beauty of the surroundings as they make their travels.
Suddenly, they are traveling over the Brooklyn Bridge and the city is in front of them. One of the Clydesdales suddenly stops and when the camera pulls back, it shows the Statue of Liberty in the distance. The music makes the scene even more touching. The Clydesdales bow down and the commercial fades to black.
This is a commercial that you are likely to remember but it was only shown on TV one time. It was during Super Bowl XXXVI in 2002. There continues to be a lot of talk about the commercial making a comeback but it wasn’t easy to get in the first place. Approval had to come from the Mayor of New York and even Congress.
Most people don’t know all that went into the making of the commercial. Bob Lachky, former vice executive president of Anheuser-Busch global creative said: “We filmed in New York City. We had a helicopter going over the Brooklyn Bridge. Mayor Giuliani let us into the city – the only film company of any sort right after 9-11. To actually come into air space with our helicopter to film the Clydesdales…the hitch coming into Battery Park and it was amazing…just amazing.”
An updated version was aired on the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks.
People had a lot to say about the commercial:
“They really should air this EVERY 9/11 without editing a single thing!,” “Still brings tears to my eyes,” and “We must NEVER forget! How touching. I’m sitting here crying at my desk right now.”
Other people talked about their memories and experiences:
“I still can’t get past it. I lost so many friends that terrible day. It stays with me like a sickness…each year come August, it starts to creep into my consciousness…and doesn’t leave until a week after the day. Thank you, Budweiser for this moving tribute… Please, everyone, take a moment, remember those lost, and those fallen from the FDNY/NYPD who so bravely faced certain death, to try and save others.”
Someone who was there for the filming of the commercial said:
“I was there when the final scenes were filmed. Not a dry eye in the bunch of us. Some of us, whom lost friends and/or loved ones were so blown away by the tribute that one gent began having difficulty breathing. He was better after a little O2 and later a Bud light.”
The entire original commercial is shown in this video: