In a nostalgic nod to the 90s, Pepsi and basketball legend Shaquille O’Neal have joined forces once again, taking fans on a hilarious journey in their latest commercial titled “I Wish.” Released as part of Pepsi’s ongoing 125th-anniversary celebration, the spot creatively features Shaq lamenting the challenges of his larger-than-life stature while playfully wishing he was “a little bit smaller.” The twist? It’s all about celebrating the perfect fit of Pepsi Mini Cans.
Drawing inspiration from the iconic 1994 “Big Slam” spot, where Shaq showcased his larger-than-life persona, “I Wish” puts a comedic spin on the challenges of being tall. From squeezing into airplane seats to navigating doorways, Shaq finds humor in life’s smaller situations. The commercial also features a cameo appearance from Skee-Lo, who updates his 1995 hit “I Wish I Was A Little Bit Taller” to perfectly complement Shaq’s wishful thinking.
The commercial is set to air during select national NBA games on ESPN and TNT starting November 22, and during NBC’s primetime NFL slate on November 23, Thanksgiving.
Skee-Lo, the artist behind the 90s hit “I Wish,” expresses his excitement about the collaboration, stating, “Now we’ve got the biggest, baddest dude in the game, Shaq, to flip my song on its head and show how smaller is actually better with Pepsi Mini Cans!”
Pepsi’s Chief Marketing Officer, Todd Kaplan, highlighted the campaign’s creative elements, tapping into both the brand’s history with Shaq and the nostalgia surrounding Skee-Lo’s iconic track. Kaplan says, “We hope Pepsi fans will enjoy the song and commercial – especially the tall ones – as nobody is too big to enjoy the convenience, fun, and awesome taste of our Pepsi Mini Cans!”
As part of Pepsi’s ongoing 125th-anniversary campaign, the brand aims to honor its legacy while looking ahead to the next 125 years. The celebration encompasses various events, campaigns, and a new visual identity, marking a new era for the iconic brand.