David Bowie's 'Starman' Appears in Audi's Super Bowl 50 Ad

Courtesy Photo
A still from the Audi R8 Big Game Commercial – Commander – Extended Cut.

Audi unleashed its 2016 Super Bowl ad on Wednesday, and it's destined to have one of the most talked-about soundtracks of any commercial on the game -- "Starman," the 1972 track by David Bowie, who died last month at age 69.

The classic Ziggy Stardust song was enjoying a renaissance even before Bowie's death. It was played in full during a sequence of Ridley Scott's space film The Martian. And Bernie Sanders has been using it on the campaign trail.

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The song brings great energy to the Audi spot, too, which tells the story of a retired astronaut who rediscovers his passion for life -- and powerful machines -- when his son lets him drive the 2017 Audi R8 V10 Plus.

Venables Bell & Partners created the ad, directed by MJZ's Craig Gillespie. It will run in the first quarter of Sunday's game. Audi released a :60 as well as an extended :90 (above) online Wednesday morning. 

The 2017 R8 is the fastest and most powerful Audi ever made, the brand says, with a top speed of 205 mph and a zero-to-60 acceleration of 3.2 seconds. That's not quite rocket speed, but it gives the spot its aspirational hook, expressed as a space theme. 

This is Audi's eighth Super Bowl ad, and the second to feature the R8.

This article originally appeared on Adweek.

For more Super Bowl 50 news, check out Adweek's Super Bowl Ad Tracker, an up-to-date list of the brands running Super Bowl spots and the agencies involved in creating them.

Super Bowl 50