Everything from Japan’s flying cars to hip-hop grandmas are celebrated in two new series produced by Great Big Story and CNN Digital Studios as part of a branded content collaboration with All Nippon Airlines (ANA), Japan’s only 5-star airline.

The partnership between ANA and CNN International Commercial (CNNIC) was originally established in 2016 with the ambition to encourage travelers to explore Japan with ANA, leading to the creation of the successful 2016 Ichigo Ichie digital series. Evolving that strong partnership, the new campaign marks the first sponsorship from CNNIC which combines the expertise of the network’s premium original video content arm CNN Digital Studios, cinematic storytelling from global media company Great Big Story, and bespoke content from CNNIC’s brand content studio, Create.

The CNN Digital Studios series, titled Vision: The Future of Japan, is the biggest series to date produced by CNN Digital Studios in London. A collection of eight films, all shot on location across Japan, offers an in-depth look at the fascinating destination and explores the ambitious projects that are shaping the future of the universe including flying cars and the world’s fastest supercomputer.

All eight videos have been published today on a bespoke Vision: The Future of Japan ANA-sponsored page on CNN Digital alongside a range of immersive multimedia features encompassing articles, photo galleries, interactives and infographics.

Over on Great Big Story, an original eight-part series titled The Inspiration of Japan highlights the creativity and curiosities of everyday life throughout the country: intricate animal sculptures from recycled newspaper, robot restaurants, the king of crepes and more. The first video in this sponsored editorial series launches 15 June. 

To complement the two series, CNNIC’s branded content studio, Create, has produced a multi-platform campaign and digital hub dedicated to telling human stories of Japanese kindness. Branded content films around this theme will sit on the hub, Great Big Story and natively on CNN Digital. The integrated campaign draws on Japan’s unique hospitality and instinct to welcome visitors to the country.

All sponsored and branded content is targeted through native ad placements across CNN Digital properties, utilising CNN Audience Insight Measurement (AIM) to focus on defined audiences and via Launchpad to reach relevant tribes of audiences through social media. The campaign is aimed at consumers with an interest in global travel from UK, Germany, France, Belgium, Italy, Switzerland and Spain with the objective of boosting the 200,000 Western European visitors that the Japan National Tourism Organization already welcomed in Q1 2017.

Sunita Rajan, SVP, Advertising Sales, APAC, CNN International Commercial comments: “Building on the success of ANA’s sponsorship of 2016’s Ichigo Ichie Great Big Story series, we’re delighted to be working with ANA on this fresh initiative to offer more new perspectives on Japan to encourage travellers to experience this vibrant country for themselves. Our solution for ANA has been powered by in-depth audience insight and tailor-made to deliver a tangible benefit for ANA through a smart combination of premium editorial and branded content and well targeted audience across CNN and Great Big Story platforms.”

Akira Nakamura, Senior Vice President EMEA, comments: “In this second series, we look forward to sharing more of the unique Japanese culture that’s at the centre of ANA’s 5-star service, through rich and innovative storytelling with our partner CNN. Our ambition is to inspire people to experience Japan, as the airline carrier that can best connect passengers with the country’s many world-class destinations and its distinctive culture.”

About CNN International Commercial
CNNI Commercial (CNNIC) is responsible for CNN's intercontinental commercial operations, spanning a diverse multiplatform portfolio across five continents. Its strategy is to grow CNN’s dominance in the pan-regional TV market while accelerating growth through digital and data capabilities. This includes monetising and growing linear and digital news brands such as CNN International, CNN en Español, CNN Arabic, Great Big Story, CNN Style and CNN Money, and a number of other verticals and local properties. CNNI Commercial delivers best-in-class, award-winning cross-platform ad sales, brand and marketing solutions underpinned by advanced digital expertise and data insight. It operates a Content Sales and Licensing business called CNN Access, which offers a suite of consultancy, content and CNN-branded initiatives around the globe as well as establishing strategic partnerships to serve new audiences. The organisation’s branded content studio, Create, has been producing award-winning multiplatform content for clients for over ten years. CNNI Commercial is part of Turner, a Time Warner company. For more information, visit

About ANA
All Nippon Airways (ANA) is the largest airline in Japan by revenues and passenger numbers. Founded in 1952, ANA flies today on 87 international routes and 116 domestic routes, including a daily flight between London Heathrow and Tokyo Haneda. The ANA group has 35,000 employees and a fleet of 256 aircraft. In FY2016, it carried 52.1 million passengers and generated revenues of 1.77 trillion Japanese yen. ANA has been a member of Star Alliance since 1999, and has joint-ventures with United Airlines on trans-Pacific and Asia routes, and with Lufthansa, Swiss International Airlines and Austrian Airlines on Japan-Europe routes. Its Frequent Flyer Program, ANA Mileage Club, has more than 26 million members. ANA was voted Airline of the Year for 2013 by Air Transport World Magazine, and in 2017 was awarded five stars for the fifth consecutive year by the world's leading Airline and Airport review site, SKYTRAX. ANA is the launch customer and biggest operator of the Boeing 787 Dreamliner.