Today (Oct. 1), Coach is launching its creative collaboration with actor/producer and global face of Coach menswear, Michael B. Jordan. Coach x MBJ is an intriguing collab, as it's inspired by Naruto (which is said to be Jordan's favorite anime franchise as a kid) and marks Jordan's first leap into the world of fashion design (under the guidance of Stuart Vevers).
Jordan explains, “When I saw the collection in person for the first time, it was a dream come true. Honestly, I was kind of speechless. To see it in your head is one thing, but to actually be able to put on a jacket or a bag that’s custom to your vision, it was almost like it wasn’t real. It’s come together better than I expected.”
The line features a number of intriguing pieces, including a denim jacket with some dope Naruto artwork on the back, fly T-shirt designs, backpacks, and footwear. These items are featured in the new Coach x MBJ commercial spot, which was directed by the Academy Award-nominated Black Panther cinematographer Rachel Morrison, who gave us some insight on working on this project with Coach and Michael B. Jordan.
How did you get involved in this project?
Mike and I have been friends since we worked together on Fruitvale Station. We have often spoken about collaborating together so when he called me up a few months ago to see if I would direct something for him, I was like, "Hell yeah."
What was it like working with Michael B. Jordan outside of Black Panther?
Mike is a consummate professional in front of and behind the lens, but more than that he's a smart and grounded person who is easy to bounce ideas off of. We definitely hyped each other up and inspired one another to push the boundaries as much as we could with this one.
Talk about how the influences of the line inspired the commercial you directed.
Japanese manga—and Naruto in particular—were the core influences both for the capsule collection and for the spot to represent this collection. We wanted to explore contemporary themes such as nature vs. bustling city life as well as how we are often imbued with power or emotional strength from something as simple as a glance or a gesture from a stranger.
What other projects are you working on in the future?
I am gearing up to direct a feature called Flint Strong written by Barry Jenkins about the female boxing phenom Claressa Shields and also planning to shoot Black Panther 2, which Ryan Coogler will direct.
Coach x MBJ is available now.