May 3 2021  |  Fragrances, Cosmetics, Skincare & Haircare

SK-II STUDIO unveils empowering “VS” Series ft. female Olympians

By Laura Shirk

Merging animation, live action and storytelling, SK-II Studio has teamed up with six Olympic athletes and Japan’s women’s national volleyball team to present an animated anthology series offering females an inspiring message: #CHANGEDESTINY

Merging animation, live action and storytelling with a big purpose, global prestige skincare brand SK-II returns with its next SK-II STUDIO installment – “VS,” a groundbreaking animated anthology series to inspire every woman that they have the power to #CHANGEDESTINY.

“VS” Series by SK-II STUDIO is a collection of six animated films based on the life experiences of six Olympic athletes—Simone Biles, the world’s most decorated gymnast, LiuXiang, world-record swimmer, Ishikawa Kasumi, table tennis player and two-time Olympic medalist, Ayaka Takahashi and Misaki Matsutomo, badminton duo and Olympic gold medalists, Mahina Maeda, surfer, and Hinotori Nippon, the Japan Volleyball team. They each explore what it means to take destiny into their own hands, overcoming societal pressures that often dictate how one should look, act and feel to be perfect.

Each film within the “VS” Series by SK-II STUDIO explores different aspects of societal pressures that women experience: Trolls. Pressure. Image Obsession. Rules. Limitations. Machine-Like Mindsets. Brought to life in the form of a “strange beast” or “kaiju” in Japanese, each “kaiju” sheds light on the inner demon that each athlete must defeat to pursue their destiny.

A mix of animation and live action, the “VS” Series spans across a broad range of genres including sci-fi, fantasy, action and sports. Each episode is independent, with its own universe and style, featuring the work of award-winning animation studios – Imaginary Forces, Passion Pictures, Platige Image and C3, and original music from singer-songwriters including John Legend and Lexie Liu.

The "VS" Series released worldwide on May 1, 2021, with a global premiere in Hainan, China, and the debut of an immersive social retail pop-up store in Sanya’s Haitang Bay Duty Free Shopping Centre in partnership with China Duty Free Group.

Click here to watch the "VS" Series trailer.

The following is a collection of snapshots from the project:

This is not the first time SK-II has entered untapped territory. Following its debut brand docu- drama “The Center Lane” by award-winning director, Hirokazu Koreeda, featuring the inspiring story of swimmer Ikee Rikako’s return to competitive swimming, the global skincare brand once again transforms itself into a film production studio, merging entertainment with purpose in the #CHANGEDESTINY universe. Showcasing, once again, that purpose-led storytelling can be done in a totally unexpected way.

As part of its brand purpose this year, SK-II will also be setting up a #CHANGEDESTINY fund, contributing $1 (USD) for every view garnered by each SK-II STUDIO film in support of women pursuing their destiny to create positive change. Total contribution to the #CHANGEDESTINY fund will be capped at $500,000 USD. Participating organizations will be announced at a later date.

“#CHANGEDESTINY is at the heart of our brand purpose at SK-II. For years, we have celebrated how destiny is not a matter of chance, but a matter of choice through the stories of courageous women around the world. This year, we want to further and strengthen our commitment toward our brand purpose.

We know from our conversations with our consumers that there are much bigger issues than skin and beauty that they are concerned about. We also know that from the pandemic and coming out of it, consumers have a higher expectation toward brands and businesses. With the release of the SK-II Studio films, we a celebrating a moment in SK-II’s #CHANGEDESTINY history. We hope these films can give women worldwide the courage to take destiny into their own hands and be a starting point for us—brands and businesses—to come together and act as a force for good and growth to create positive and meaningful change,” shares Sandeep Seth, Chief Executive Officer, Global SK-II.

To find out more about the “VS” Series and learn about SK-II STUDIO and #ChangeDestiny, please visit the virtual SK-II CITY at https://city.sk-ii.com.

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