Toyota Shares Messages of Hope, Strength, and Social Responsibility in Big Game

Toyota Shares Messages of Hope, Strength, and Social Responsibility in Big Game

60-second and five-second spots highlight company’s belief in Respect for People

PLANO, Texas (February 3, 2021) – Toyota Motor North America (TMNA) returns to advertise in the Big Game with a 60-second ad that shares an uplifting message of hope and strength, as well as a five-second “billboard” that encourages people to think about the impact they have on those around them and follow Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) COVID-19 guidelines.

Fueled by the power of a family’s love, Toyota’s 60-second Big Game ad “Upstream” features Team Toyota athlete Jessica Long’s incredible journey, which began when she was adopted by an American couple from a Russian orphanage. The spot takes viewers on a trip down memory lane of Long’s childhood, which, in turn, would help lead her to become the second most decorated Paralympian in U.S. history.

“’Upstream’ highlights Toyota’s mission to shine a light on athletes like Jessica who work tirelessly every day to pursue their passion and inspire people around the world to reach their full potential,” said Lisa Materazzo, group vice president, Toyota Marketing, Toyota Motor North America. “We are grateful to Jessica and her family for their willingness to allow us to share such a personal part of their story.”

“Upstream” will air in the first position (A) in the commercial break before the 2-minute warning in the second quarter. The spot ends with the uplifting line, “We believe there is hope and strength in all of us” referencing Jessica’s extraordinary journey, Toyota’s belief in Respect for People, and aims to inspire others. Additionally, “Upstream” represents the values Toyota shares with the Olympic and Paralympic Movements, and the athletes who inspire people around the world to reach their full potential.

The 60-second spot features Long swimming through milestone scenes over the course of her life, starting with a depiction of the Russian orphanage from which she was adopted. The camera then cuts to her parents (played by actors) receiving the emotional call that they would be adopting a baby girl, but with the news that her legs would need to be amputated due to a rare condition. The scenes following show a young swimmer depicting Jessica, hands on hips ready to compete, knowing she’s different from other children, yet remaining resilient. The spot continues with Jessica competing in her quest to greatness, overcoming all obstacles as she becomes a Paralympic legend.

“I love that the spot highlights not just the gold medals and accomplishments but the challenging journey to get there,” said Team Toyota athlete and U.S. Paralympian Jessica Long. “Perseverance, grit and overcoming the odds contributed to my success and my hope is that people feel inspired and uplifted by this emotional spot.”

“Upstream” was created by Toyota’s agency of record, Saatchi & Saatchi, in partnership with Dentsu and directed by Tarsem Singh. For credits, please click HERE.

As a company that is committed to improving the communities in which it operates, Toyota is also taking the platform provided by the Big Game to air a five-second message that encourages people to practice social responsibility by following CDC guidelines such as: wearing masks, practicing social distancing, and, getting the COVID-19 vaccine, when available. This follows a Community Service Announcement (CSA) that the company produced last year to bring awareness and credible information to the African American and Hispanic communities around the country, which are among the hardest hit by the virus.

Childhood footage of Jessica Long, a Team Toyota athlete and U.S. Paralympic swimmer, who stars in Toyota’s 2021 Big Game spot “Upstream.”

Want to Learn More?
Swimming ‘Upstream’ With U.S. Paralympian Jessica Long

About Toyota

Toyota (NYSE:TM) has been a part of the cultural fabric in the U.S. for more than 60 years, and is committed to advancing sustainable, next-generation mobility through our Toyota and Lexus brands, plus our nearly 1,500 dealerships.

Toyota has created a tremendous value chain and directly employs more than 36,000 in the U.S. The company has contributed world-class design, engineering, and assembly of more than 30 million cars and trucks at our 9 manufacturing plants, 10 including our joint venture in Alabama that begins production in 2021.

To help inspire the next generation for a career in STEM-based fields, including mobility, Toyota launched its virtual education hub at www.TourToyota.com with an immersive experience and chance to visit many of our U.S. manufacturing facilities. The hub also includes a series of free STEM-based lessons and curriculum through Toyota USA Foundation partners, virtual field trips and more. For more information about Toyota, visit www.toyotanewsroom.com.

Leigh Anne Sessions
469-292-5849
leigh.sessions@toyota.com

Marissa Borjon
469-292-6395
marissa.borjon@toyota.com

Jana Hartline
310-738-4612
jana.hartline@saatchi.com

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Toyota’s Big Game ad “Upstream” features Jessica Long, a Team Toyota athlete and U.S. Paralympic swimmer.
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Toyota’s Big Game ad “Upstream” takes viewers on a trip down memory lane of Jessica Long’s childhood.
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“Upstream” ends with the uplifting line, “We believe there is hope and strength in all of us” referencing Jessica Long’s extraordinary journey and Toyota’s belief in Respect for People.
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A five-second “billboard” by Toyota encourages people to think about the impact they have on those around them and follow Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) COVID-19 guidelines.

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