'1984' ad director Ridley Scott says Epic's parody ad idea was 'terrific'

fortnite on iPhone XR
fortnite on iPhone XR (Image credit: iMore)

What you need to know

  • Epic Games parodied the famous "1984" Apple ad in its battle over Fortnite on App Store.
  • Ridley Scott, director of the original ad, has had his say on the parody.
  • He thinks that some aspects were "terrific" but others, not so much."I think the animation was terrific, the idea was terrific, the message was 'ehh'."

By this point everyone knows that Apple removed Fortnite from the App Store following a whole round of shenanigans, but things really kicked up a gear when Epic released its "1984" ad parody. Taking Apple's famous ad and turning it against it, Epic's #FreeFortnite campaign was born. But what did Ridley Scott, director of the original ad, think about it?

The folks at IGN asked him, and it turns out that he has seen Epic's parody. And yes, he thinks the idea was a good one. But he has reservations.

"I sure have and I wrote to them because on the one hand I can be fully complimented by the fact they copied [my commercial] shot for shot," Scott says. "But pity the message is so ordinary when they could have been talking about democracy or more powerful things… And they didn't use it."Scott added, "I think the animation was terrific, the idea was terrific, the message was 'ehh'."

So there we have it. Scott has no problem with Epic's parody and, really, why would he? But he does have a point – it would have been nice if all this energy went into dealing with the bigger problems we're dealing with right now.

Maybe Epic just couldn't think of a catchy hashtag for those things.

Oliver Haslam

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too.

Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.