Call of Duty Warzone’s “Squad up the World” campaign kicks off with a star-filled cinematic film that brings the game to life. Activision and 72andSunny partnered with filmmaker Gibson Hazard for the spot.
The campaign celebrates the popular free-to-play game, which has reached 100 million gamers (only matched by "Fortnite") since its release last year. The film launches today across celebrity and Call of Duty social channels before players are able to jump into the new season three content for Warzone and Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War. The third season sees the setting shift to 1984.
The film starts off with a dramatic zoom into a skyscraper as Grammy winning rapper Young Thug jumps through glass windows to grab onto the bottom of a helicopter, flown by multi-platinum selling rap artist Gunna, as gunmen shoot at the aircraft. That sets the tone for the rest of the video, which showcases the celebrities teaming up to get into and out of jams. The film leverages Hazard's signature epic transitions and sound design to switch between CG, gameplay, and real-world live action scenes.
On Friday, the film will go live on digital as well as social platforms like Snapchat and Tiktok where users can follow along using the hashtag #LetsGo. Also included in the campaign are beauty stills of the celebrities depicted as Call of Duty heroes which will be posted to the IG stories of the various celebrities in the film.
At just 24 years old, Hazard has already built an impressive resume working with artists including Drake, Billie Eilish, Lil Nas X and Lil Uzi Vert. In just four years, Hazard has worked on a wide range of projects including, tour videos, music videos, commercials, films for the Grammys and MTV’s VMAs. He also helmed an Emmy-nominated Kobe Bryant tribute video featuring Dr. Dre, directed alongside Jak Bannon.
This was the largest project Hazard has taken on in terms of scale, number of shoots and number of talent. The shoot required months of planning and was shot across multiple days in Los Angeles, London and Michigan. Hazard then edited the video in Paris alongside Mathematic who worked on the VFX.
Hazard, who has worked on various music and sports projects recently, says he was interested in entering a new genre and was compelled by the action-packed nature of the project. “COD has such an incredible legacy surrounding it, I wanted to keep true to that but to make sure I added my own take on it. There's never a dull moment when you’re playing ‘Warzone.’ It felt like a seamless match to my own shooting style where I traditionally focus on fast paced energy with transitions that absolutely keep audiences engaged during every moment of the film.”
“Call of Duty is all about coming together with your friends and having fun. In only its first year, Warzone has been transformative to this iconic entertainment franchise and has quickly achieved a cultural phenomenon status.” Tyler Bahl, VP and head of marketing, Call of Duty at Activision said in a statement. This is the first major campaign for Bahl, who joined the company in March and Activision’s chief creative officer, Pelle Sjoenell, who joined the company in 2019.
Here’s the full list of celebrities included in the film:
- Mookie Betts – Two-time MLB World Series Champion, MVP, five-time Gold Glove winner and four-time MLB All-Star
- Dennis Schroder – NBA athlete for the Los Angeles Lakers
- Young Thug – Grammy Award Winner and founder and CEO, Young Stoner Life Records
- Gunna – Grammy nominated, multi-platinum rap artist
- Jack Harlow – rapper
- Druski – comedian
- Michelle Viscusi – National Champion pistol shooter
- Saweetie – Multi-platinum rap artist and entrepreneur
- AJ Tracey – British rapper
- Swae Lee – hip-hop artist
- Jack Grealish – Aston Villa and England footballer