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Dramamine Film Celebrates the Little-Known Legacy of the Barf Bag

Jordan P. Kelley, Content Director, BrandStorytelling

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In 1949, Dramamine and the barf bag were both introduced to the world, forever altering the landscape of motion sickness relief. Now, 75 years later, Dramamine remains at the forefront of motion sickness treatment. However, as Dramamine's effectiveness soared, the once-ubiquitous barf bag faded into obscurity. To mark this joint anniversary and celebrate the cultural significance of the barf bag, Dramamine has produced and released the documentary short, 'The Last Barf Bag: A Tribute to a Cultural Icon'.

Directed by Sunny Sixteen and released in partnership with FCB Chicago, 360PR+ and The Shipyard, the documentary short film delves into stories of the barf bag (or, as its more affectionately referred to by one collector, the nauseavat). Conversations are captured with barf bag collectors, historians, and individuals impacted by motion sickness. The film aims to shed light on the barf bag's enduring legacy and its place in American culture.

In addition to the documentary, Dramamine has introduced a limited edition collection of repurposed barf bags. These bags, transformed into puppets, envelopes, gift bags, stockings, and more, offer a creative homage to the once-practical paper product. In addition, artist Jessie Bearden was commissioned to showcase her innovative use of vintage barf bags, creating a custom-made puffer coat that turn the bags into a unique fashion statement.

The campaign's pinnacle event took place on April 3rd in New York City with a one-day pop-up museum exhibition. There, attendees viewed extensive collections from prominent barf bag collectors, including bags gathered from around the world and even outer space. The exhibition served as a tribute to the barf bag's cultural impact and invited visitors to reflect on its significance.

The film highlights a broader trend in brand storytelling through its production of this kind of non-traditional brand documentary. As audiences increasingly crave authentic narratives, brands are finding creative ways to engage viewers on a deeper level. Dramamine's documentary stands as a testament to this evolution, blending storytelling with brand messaging on a subject that is far from traditionally engaging. By embracing documentary storytelling, brands like Dramamine are not only showcasing their products but also creating meaningful connections with their audience, fostering loyalty, and leaving a lasting impact.

While Dramamine's success may have diminished the necessity of barf bags, the brand recognizes their cultural importance.'The Last Barf Bag' exposes viewers to the not so obvious yet fated relationship between Dramamine and the barf bag, all while subtly inviting them to contemplate the efficacy of Dramamine's products. By commemorating the joint anniversary with this documentary, exploring avenues for the barf bag's reinvention, and creating a place for their audience to interact with the near-extinct ephemera of airlines past, Dramamine has succeeded in implementing a multi-tiered engagement opportunity for consumers that informs and entertains, subsequently brightening the brand's halo.



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