December 13, 2023

11 of the most important pieces of content Red Bull ever released

In the ensuing years, Red Bull has created vast amounts of content across various platforms and media: documentaries, video shorts, music festivals, video games, and more.

Michael Schreiber

Somehow, Red Bull figured it out early on. When the internet was still in its infancy, the Austrian energy drink company decided that it would be wiser to develop its own content than simply placing ads on somebody else’s. Red Bull didn’t want to rent an audience; it wanted to own one – and for more than three decades, it has.

It started in the 1990s when Red Bull began sponsoring extreme sports events and athletes. But in the 2000s, the company more than doubled down on the creation of original content with the launch of Red Bull TV and the Red Bull Media House in 2007.

In the ensuing years, Red Bull has created vast amounts of content across various platforms and media: documentaries, video shorts, music festivals, video games, and more. All of this material has created legions of fans who are committed to the brand.

"Content is the currency of the future,” Red Bull’s CMO Stefan Kolb told Adweek in 2017. “We're not just investing in content; we're investing in our future. We're investing in our ability to connect with audiences, to build relationships with them, and to ultimately drive sales. We believe that content is the most effective way to do that."

The vast sums that Red Bull has spent on content over the years have paid off in more than one way. The brand is worth close to $20 billion and has close to half of the market share for energy drinks in the United States. But beyond the bottom line, there’s the enduring – and, in some cases, award-winning – content that it’s brought to the world. 

Below is a list of some of the more compelling examples of Red Bull’s vast library. 

The Wild Ride (1995)

This documentary-style film, produced by Red Bull, follows the journey of freestyle motorcycle legend Travis Pastrana as he prepares for the X Games and other competitions. The film provides an intimate look at the life of extreme athletes and the challenges they face.

Red Bull Music Academy (1998-2019)

Red Bull's annual workshop program, which was held in various cities around the world, provides aspiring musicians with the opportunity to learn from industry professionals and collaborate with other artists. The program helped to launch the careers of numerous musicians and has fostered a vibrant international music community.

Red Bull Rampage (2001-present)

Red Bull's annual freeriding mountain bike competition, held in Utah, has become one of the most prestigious events in the sport. The event showcases the world's top riders and attracts a massive global audience.

Red Bull Batalla de los Gallos (2005-present)

This international freestyle rap competition, hosted by Red Bull, has become a global phenomenon, showcasing the talent of aspiring rappers from different countries. The event has helped to popularize freestyle rap and provided a platform for emerging artists. This year’s final is in Bogota, Colombia on December 2, 2023. 

The Art of Flight (2011)

This groundbreaking snowboarding film, produced by Red Bull Media House, revolutionized the genre with its innovative cinematography and storytelling. The film follows the journey of snowboarders as they push the limits of the sport and explore the beauty of the mountains.

Felix Baumgartner's supersonic freefall from 128k (2012)

Released on YouTube, this video chronicles Felix Baumgartner's record-breaking stratospheric jump in 2012. The video has amassed over 48 million views and is considered one of the most thrilling and awe-inspiring pieces of content ever produced by Red Bull Media House. In the video, Baumgartner ascends to an altitude of 128,100 feet (39,045 meters) in a helium-filled balloon, surpassing the previous record set by Joe Kittinger in 1960. He then leaps from the capsule, becoming the first person to break the sound barrier during freefall, reaching a speed of 833.6 mph (1,346 km/h).

Red Bull Crashed Ice (2012-2018)

This video game, developed and published by Red Bull, captures the thrill and intensity of ice cross downhill racing, a sport where athletes race on skates down a downhill course filled with obstacles. The game provides a realistic and immersive experience for players.

The Dawn Wall (2017)

This Oscar-nominated documentary chronicles Tommy Caldwell's free solo climb of the El Capitan's Dawn Wall, one of the most challenging rock climbs in the world. The film captures the intensity and emotions of Caldwell's ascent and the camaraderie of the climbing community.

Kilian Jornet: The Runner (2018)

This documentary follows the story of Kilian Jornet, a world-renowned ultrarunner and skyrunner known for his feats of endurance. The film takes viewers on a journey through some of the most challenging and remote landscapes on Earth, as Jornet pushes the limits of human performance.

Free Solo (2018)

This Oscar-winning documentary follows Alex Honnold's audacious rope-free solo climb of El Capitan, considered one of the most dangerous climbs ever attempted. The film offers a gripping and intimate portrait of Honnold's preparation, determination, and the risks he takes to achieve his goal.

McConkey (2021)

This documentary-style film tells the story of Shane McConkey, a freestyle skier and snowboarder who pioneered backcountry filmmaking. The film celebrates McConkey's unique blend of creativity, innovation, and daring, as he explores the possibilities of extreme sports filmmaking.

Photo Credit: Dall E

Michael Schreiber

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