Over three million Filipinos view iconic brand’s message of love within a day

Philippine lifestyle clothing icon Bench achieved an online milestone when its latest film, “Amoy Kita” (translated into English as, “How Long Can You Keep a Secret?”), achieved over three million views within a day. Indicative of the changing attitudes towards young LGBT in a country known for its traditional values, “Amoy Kita” engaged people in groundbreaking manner by showing that the most valuable love of all is that which comes from the home.

The film shows a young student eager to catch the eye of his jock crush every day in school. After many more days like this, the boy learns that his traditionally macho dad has always known about the boy’s closeted sexuality, and has been completely supportive about it.

Almost immediately, the film sparked conversations across social media, as people shared their excited reactions across Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, with one netizen saying, “Thumbs up BENCH!! The idea and concept of accepting a gay by his father by taking an action with no words is truly amazing.”

Produced by Campaign Asia and 4A’s 2017 Philippine Agency of the Year TBWA\Santiago Mangada Puno, “Amoy Kita” was helmed by popular film director and author Chris Martinez, who described his approach as, “Want(ing) to infuse it with tenderness all throughout and a lot of care, because it is never easy coming out, especially between fathers and sons.”

Ultimately, Martinez’ instincts paid off, as online feedback from local and foreign netizens has been nothing less than ecstatic, with people posting positive responses, memes, and reaction videos. Some have even going so far as to share their own emotional coming out stories. Mainstream media outlets such as CNN picked up on the story, praising Bench for their handling of the material. Perhaps the most telling sign of the film’s significance was other brands creating their own memes around the line, “amoy kita”.

Kickstarting conversations through digital innovations is nothing new for Bench and TBWA\SMP, which explored the world of online films as early as 2012, through the landmark “Benchingko Films”. Since then, Bench has led the local charge for lifestyle brands online, building up a strong online presence through programmed content with a host of celebrities promoting local culture and values.

Last year, Bench celebrated its landmark 30th year in the business. This year, the company is continuing its legacy of creating sharing messages that go beyond product and fashion, and push Filipino creativity and humanity forward.

Title: “AMOY KITA”
Client: Bench
Creative team: James Mendoza, Chino Jayme, Melvin Mangada, Denise Oyog
Accounts Team: Portia Catuira, Paolo Broma, Jake Espina
Director: Chris Martinez
Producers: Sunny Lucero, Francis Bagnes
Digital Propagation: Ingrid Papa, Peach Natividad, Misha Lecaros, Dylan Pizarro
Offline and online editor: Vince Belen
Production House and Post House: How’s Everything?
Colorist: Emil Batungbacal
Audio House: Soundesign
Sound Engineer: Paolo Escanillas
Music: Loudbox
Musical arrangers: IJ Garcia and Jeff Arcilla