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Breaking News in Advertising, Media and Technology

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    Not long after removing the gender labels in its toy section, Target has once again impressed the social justice wing of the Internet—this time by using a model with braces and arm crutches in a Halloween ad for children's costumes.

    The model in question is a little girl wearing a Princess Elsa costume from Disney's Frozen. The ad itself went viral after the mother of a child with a disability posted it on Facebook.

    "Dear Target, I love you," she wrote. "Thank you for including a child with braces and arm crutches into your advertising campaign!" 

    Others took to Twitter to praise the ad, and Target for its ongoing dedication to diversity.





    In case you'd forgotten, Target used a child model with Down syndrome in an ad a few years ago. It also revamped its plus-size clothing line earlier this year, and debuted its first-ever plus-size male model this month.

    This is, of course, a creative way to compete with Walmart, whose public image is a blend of convenience and tone-deaf heartlessness, as well as a way for Target to distract from its own union-busting. But whatever the motivation, it's hard to ignore the impact of Target's diversity efforts on people who don't get much public representation.

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    Adobe and Edelman San Francisco had a surprise hit last Halloween with their "Photoshop Murder Mystery"—a crime hidden inside a Photoshop document, which designers could solve by sifting through the layers for clues. (The campaign won two Cannes Lions in PR, among other awards.)

    Now, Adobe is back—and heading to space—with an encore.

    It's Oct. 31 in the year 2398, and the IXS FarStar has been cleared for re-entry into Earth's atmosphere. But one of the crew members has been felled by an unknown illness. Naturally, what this crew member needs is someone with mad Photoshop skills—who can gather scientific evidence from this Photoshop file, post a screenshot to Photoshop's Facebook page to return the IXS FarStar and its crew safely to Earth.

    The first body of evidence has been posted—the IXS FarStar's bridge. Download it here.

    More clues will be posted as the week goes on. Read more about this year's #PsMystery over at the official Photoshop blog.

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    Jude Law is back to make another luxe bet over a couple of glasses of Johnnie Walker.

    Last year, the British star literally danced for Italian actor Giancarlo Giannini in "The Gentleman's Wager," a short film from the scotch marketer about a friendly contest for a classic yacht. Now, a teaser for "The Gentleman's Wager II"—again from ad agency Anomaly—finds Law coveting a vintage race car (a Delahaye Type 135S, to be precise, long owned by the Walker family).

    The full film premieres Oct. 31 in Rome, with Law and Giannini hosting. It promises to be another lighthearted bit: In the trailer, Law catches a face full of engine oil and picks up co-star Zhao Wei en route to his destination—Monaco, naturally. (It will please motor sports enthusiasts to know that the car in question has raced at Le Mans and Goodwood.)

    It also ties into Johnnie Walker's broader message. The soundtrack, Plastic Bertrand's "Ca Plane Pour Moi," anchored the brand's global and infectious "Joy Will Take You Further" campaign launch just last month (among other notable names, Law and Wei play roles in that as well).

    Anomaly, which Diageo selected to lead creative on the Johnnie Walker account at the end of 2014, is behind both films, which build on BBH's famous, long-running "Keep Walking" campaign.

    Not everyone is convinced the spirits maker didn't miss a step when it shifted course. But if the wager preceding this one was any indication, Law is a sure-footed choice. Plus, it's fair to ask: Why stroll through the high life when you could dance—or cruise in a rare and beautiful convertible—instead?

    At the very least, you can imagine yourself doing those things ... while trying to escape your mundane day in a bottle of whisky. 

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    It's a big night for sports. The World Series starts tonight. And so, too, does the 2015-16 NBA season, and the basketball league is celebrating with a new commercial from Translation titled "Joy"—a perfect sentiment for a return to action after so many months off.

    And there is, indeed, plenty of joy on display in the spot, as fans celebrate the drama, athleticism and transcendence of the game.

    Several teams, including the Chicago Bulls and Golden State Warriors will roll out customized versions of the ad, which is the third installment of the new global campaign "This Is Why We Play." The previous installments were "Anthem" and "Anticipation."

    In addition, in a first for professional sports, the NBA is partnering with Facebook to offer custom team frames for profile pics. Fans can facebook.com/NBA to view and select frames  for all 30 teams.

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    Havas Chicago is located at the busy corner of Grand Ave. and Wabash in the city's River North neighborhood, next to Eataly and across from the Nordstrom flagship store. Visitors to the area now have a new attraction to enjoy—a quite unusual peep show set up by Havas in its lobby windows.

    It looks like a storefront straight out of 1980s Times Square, with flashing pink neon lights urging passersby to check out "TOPLESS GIRLS." It's been getting quite a reaction from pedestrians, too.

    But those who succumb to temptation and have a gawk through the peep holes are greeted with a sight they probably weren't expecting—a set of nude black mannequins painted with sobering facts about breast cancer.

    • 8 out of 9 women diagnosed with breast cancer have no family history
    • Every two minutes a woman is diagnosed with breast cancer
    • 70 percent of breast cancers are found through self-exams

    Campaigns that sexualize breast cancer are generally frowned upon, but this effort neutralizes its sexual message to send a nonsexual one instead. Peepers are encouraged to assuage their guilt by using the hashtag #HavasPeepShow in social posts about the experience. Havas will donate $1 to breast cancer research for every use of the hashtag.

    The provocative installation went live on Oct. 24 for National Breast Cancer Awareness Month and will run through Nov. 10.

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    These have to be the most coordinated zombies in the world. Even when they shamble, they do it in sync.

    Zumba, the popular dance fitness format, showcased its founder and a few employees—dressed up as Walking Dead extras—in a choreographed Halloween-themed routine. The digital short, launching this week on social media, follows up the brand's first-ever TV ads from last fall, which showed people in everyday situations being overcome with an urge to twerk it out.

    In the new video, the undead get happy feet. And the more they move, the more humanity they recover. (So that's the answer to the zombie apocalypse? Worth a shot, at any rate.) Zumba seems to be suggesting that you go ahead and try this at home, if only to see what it does for your liveliness.

    The spot, conceived in-house and produced by Tristark Productions, used a Phantom drone and 5K RED Dragon cameras for its slick look. South Florida, where Zumba is headquartered, serves as the backdrop.

    There's also a behind-the-scenes short on the makeup and effects:

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    One woman is less lonely while working from home. A teenager finds comfort while suffering from alopecia. A doctor's orders help a man battle depression. What do they all have in common? A loving pet.

    This new ad for U.K. animal shelter Battersea examines the uniformly sweet, if occasionally goofy, ways in which humans relate to, and rely on, their cats and dogs.

    The "Who needs who?" tagline distills the point nicely: While technically it's people who adopt pets, the resulting relationship is more of a two-way street.

    The position is a touch defensive and risks falling into the genre trap of schmaltziness, but it thankfully ventures nowhere near hyper-manipulative Sarah McLachlan territory.

    More important, it's also heartfelt and credible. Everyone needs a reason to laugh sometimes; a large dog who wholeheartedly believes he's small enough to sit on your lap is a pretty good one.

    Creatives: Benjamin Wight, Jennifer Craven
    Music Production: Melissa Hammond
    Editor: Lucia Curzi
    Visual Effects: Jonny Hicks
    Producer: Rosanne Crisp
    Colorist: Simona Harrison
    Production Manager: Claire Fishersmith
    Production Company: Great Guns
    Producer: Mathew Alden
    Line Producer: Nina van Heerden
    Executive Producer: Laura Gregory
    Director of Photography: Dennis Madden
    Director: Frankie Caradonna

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    If you're in the GIF business, you'd better have some loopy marketing. Thankfully, Giphy does. Here's the GIF purveyor's latest commercial—a pleasantly off-kilter spot, styled like a cooking segment from a talk show, for its funky new GIF maker.

    Here's the video description from Giphy:

    Do you have any totally GIF-able moments just sitting, unused in your laptop or refrigerator? Well dust 'em off and put on your cookin' gloves, 'cause Pam and Gina are here to teach you how to whip up the best GIFs, and upload them right into Giphy with GIF Maker. Bon Apetit!

    Dark Igloo directed the spot. Amber Schaefer, who plays host Gina, starred in several previous Giphy spots, also directed by Dark Igloo. Check those out below.

    Via Adverve.

    Spot: "How To Make A GIF With GIF Maker"
    Directed by Dark Igloo
    Produced by Amber Schaefer
    Written by Kyle Sauer, Amber Schaefer and Dark Igloo
    Starring Jo Firestone and Amber Schaefer
    Edited by Garrett Weinholtz, Sascha Stanton-Craven, Rhys Stover, Kyle Sauer
    Production Design by Kyle Sauer
    Sound Design by Nate Greenberg
    Director of Photography: Chris Cannucciari
    Line Producer: Alexander Toporowicz
    Assistant Director: Steven Valle
    Stylist: Holland Brown
    Hair & Makeup: Brittany Romney
    Eskimos: Brooke Bamford, Iain Burke, Zoë Lotus

    Spot: "This is GIPHY"
    Directed by Dark Igloo
    Produced by Amber Schaefer
    Written by Kyle Sauer, Amber Schaefer and Dark Igloo
    Starring Dan Hodapp, Amber Schaefer, Damien Washington jo firestone and Rad Dogman as itself.
    Edited by Garrett Weinholtz, Sascha Stanton-Craven, Rhys Stover
    Production Design by Kyle Sauer
    Sound Design by Nate Greenberg
    Director of Photography: Chris Cannucciari
    Line Producer: Alexander Toporowicz
    Assistant Director: Steven Valle
    Stylist: Holland Brown
    Hair & Makeup: Brittany Romney
    Eskimos: Brooke Bamford, Iain Burke, Zoë Lotus

    Spot: How to Text A Gif (And Can It Kill You?)
    Directed by Dark Igloo
    Produced by Amber Schaefer
    Written by Kyle Sauer, Amber Schaefer and Dark Igloo
    Starring Dan Hodapp, Amber Schaefer, and all the gifs
    Edited by Garrett Weinholtz, Sascha Stanton-Craven, Rhys Stover
    Production Design by Kyle Sauer
    Sound Design by Nate Greenberg
    Director of Photography: Chris Cannucciari
    Line Producer: Alexander Toporowicz
    Assistant Director: Steven Valle
    Stylist: Holland Brown
    Hair & Makeup: Brittany Romney
    Eskimos: Brooke Bamford, Iain Burke, Zoë Lotus

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    In this spot for Dallas Vintage Toys by ad agency Dieste, a father helps his young son build a robot costume out of cardboard, old washing-machine hose, aluminum foil and other odds and ends.

    Cue the family hug.

    But wait! It's only in the first 30 seconds that the narrative zigs into Hallmark Halloween territory, before zagging in an unexpected direction. Enjoy the twist before reading further.

    Whoa. So dad's a showoff who went and got an awesome Transformer-esque robo-suit for himself—one that makes his kid's getup look like crap? What the heck is this ad all about?

    "It's good to indulge ourselves with what makes us happy from time to time," Dieste executive creative director Ciro Sarmiento tells AdFreak. "Because the nature of the store—collectible vintage toys—breaks traditional conventions, we wanted the film to do the same. It's a toy store, yes, but mostly for the adult inner child."

    But now Junior's Halloween is ruined!

    "Dad is the hero, not the kid," says Sarmiento. "The difference between the two had to be remarkably unfair, highlighting the gap in a comedic way. The twist makes you realize how good it is to be a grownup and be able to spend your hard-earned money on whatever makes you happy."

    Yeah, Dad's costume is pretty rad.

    "We got in touch with several artists until finally deciding on this particular one and its operator—yes, the suit comes with an operator," Sarmiento says. "It took almost 45 minutes for the actor to suit up, and about 30 minutes to remove."

    It's a memorable spot, and changing gears mid-stream is effective. Even so, the notion of adults satisfying their craving for vintage toys—the raison d'être for the ad's existence—seems a bit muddled. A final shot of robo-dad admiring all those cool collectibles shown in the spot, or playing with the toys in his man cave, might have helped.

    Otherwise, there's plenty to say about indulging your inner child: A spot from earlier this week showed us where that leads. Pretty soon, Pops will be quitting his job, burning his clothes and zooming off on a Harley to experience life to the fullest.

    Client: Dallas Vintage Toys
    Agency: Dieste
    Executive Creative Director: Ciro Sarmiento
    Associate Creative Director: Damian Nuñez
    Sr. Art Director: Francisco Arranz Amaya
    Sr. Copywriter: Jose Benitez
    Agency Producer: Jose Luis Chavez
    Production Company: La Banda Films
    Exc. Producer: Roberto Snider
    Director: Nicolas Caicoya
    Postproduction: Reel FX
    Music Studio: Happy Together Music

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    "Men influence just 20% of consumer spending yet 97% of advertising Creative Directors are dudes. Can we please just leave it that way?"

    That's the Twitter bio for The 97% Conference, a spoof of The 3% Conference, the group dedicated to championing female talent and leadership and changing the ratio of female creative directors in advertising. The 97% Conference's hashtag, though, is #MaintainTheRatio.

    Check out some of the more amusing @97percentconf posts below.

    And it seems 3% Conference founder Kat Gordon and advocate Cindy Gallop are both on board with the biting parody.

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    Leave it to the Brits to perfectly explain sexual consent by comparing it to tea.

    "Tea and Consent," a wonderful PSA by the Thames Valley Police featuring stick figures, initially seems like a gross oversimplification that might poorly serve a serious and sensitive subject—or at the very least, open well-intentioned cops up to jokes about British people and their thing about tea.

    But the comparison is not only effective, it quite clearly condemns any attempts to claim murkiness around the subject. Because if you get when it is and isn't OK to serve tea, you can't really claim ignorance when your initially willing partner slips into unconsciousness.


    The animation was created by Blue Seat Studios, using copy written by blogger Rockstar Dinosaur Pirate Princess, whose original text you can read here. Notably, it has way more expletives. Blue Seat created both an uncensored version and an abridged, more kid-friendly version—which Thames Valley Police preferred for obvious reasons, and is now using for its #ConsentisEverything campaign.

    After explaining basic consent ("Oh my God, I would love a cup of tea!"), the video dives headfirst into less evident territory. In less than three minutes, it explores a multitude of scenarios where consent gets blurry, from simple (your guest did want tea, but changed his or her mind once you put the kettle on) to less so (your guest isn't really sure how to feel about tea right now).

    "If you say 'Hey, would you like a cup of tea?' and they're like, 'Uh, you know, I'm not really sure,' then you can make them a cup of tea, or not, but be aware that that they might not drink it," the narrator says. "And if they don't drink it, then—and this is the important bit—don't make them drink it. Just because you made it doesn't mean you're entitled to watch them drink it. And if they say, 'No, thank you', then don't make them tea. At all."

    The cutesy quality of the metaphor also enables the narrator to take a hard stance in areas where it's needed: "If they're unconscious, don't make them tea. Unconscious people don't want tea, and they can't answer the question, 'Do you want tea?' Because they're unconscious."

    And it explores what to do if an unconscious person consented while conscious, or was conscious when you began, then became unconscious: "You should just put the tea down, make sure the unconscious person is safe, and—this is the important part again—don't make them drink the tea."

    Lastly, it reminds people that saying yes to tea once doesn't mean they want you to drop by and make tea every day; and saying yes last night doesn't mean they want to wake up drinking it.

    That's a lot of bases tackled, and all in the time it takes someone to have a cup (or not).

    "The law is very clear. Sex without consent is rape," Detective Chief Inspector Justin Fletcher of the police force told The Guardian. "Awareness of what sexual consent means and how to get it is vital."

    The piece concludes, "If you can understand how completely ludicrous it is to force people to have tea when they don't want tea, and you are able to understand when people don't want tea, then how hard is it to understand when it comes to sex? Whether it's tea or sex, consent is everything."

    The narrator then signs off to make himself a cup of tea. Do yourself a favor and don't follow the metaphor down that road—it's too easy, and you're above it! (Even if we're not.)

    Though if, for the Brits, tea is more or less equivalent to sex, that explains a lot about the Boston Tea Party. We're hard-pressed to think of any other instance where refusing tea got to be such a big deal.

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    Earlier this year, Carlsberg launched a line of male grooming products—shampoo, conditioner and body lotion—made with its beer.

    Now, the brewer is marking Movember by expanding the series with a shaving gel, aftershave and mustache cream, while encouraging consumers to buy the products to support men's health.

    A new video covers the broad strokes of the initiative, including the obligatory testimonials about the benefits of grooming with beer, as well as shots of guys both drinking it and enjoying serious facial-hair pampering.

    The clip also scores extra points for the frothy 'staches and cheeky tone.

    Seriously though, good luck trying to get your mustache to corkscrew like that without a professional stylist, full production crew and gaggle of scientists.

    Each product includes about 200 milliliters of Carlsberg, reduced via freeze-drying and mixed into the formula to create 100-millileter bottles. Proceeds from the sales—the cost in euros is equivalent to about $67 for the set of three—will go to Movember, which raises money for male-focused health issues like the fight against prostate cancer.

    Launched in 2003 in Australia, the charity has become a global force with brand partners around the globe.

    CP+B Scandinavia created the campaign, titled "Beer'd Beauty" (as well as the original launch, more simply branded "Beer Beauty"). The whole thing is a fun, on-target concept, especially now that it's tied to a good cause. Activations include events with barbershops in London and Copenhagen.

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    Talk about a touchy-feely campaign!

    To promote KitKat's launch in Colombia, J. Walter Thompson and Mindshare installed 20 billboards in the capital city of Bogota.

    That may sound like a typical move, but these were no ordinary out-of-home ads. According to JWT, tiny motors in the signs "activated a system that transferred pleasant vibrations to the lower and upper back of the user. All you had to do was lean against the billboard, and it would give you a quick and comforting massage."

    Hey, if you were taking the bus to a massage parlor, this would save time.

    The idea was to give stressed-out commuters "a break," which, of course, ties in with KitKat's familiar taglines, which include "Give me a break" and "Have a break, have a KitKat." The billboards were geolocated on Google Maps, with Twitter and Facebook support, to drum up interest.

    Sure, the whole idea sounds mildly pervy. But unlike another notable bus-stop branding ploy, at least people didn't have to get all handsy with random public-transit riders. And according to the case study, the results were pretty impressive: That big guy in the leather jacket around the 0:22 mark seems positively blissed-out—and observe how the hardhat goes for the soothing butt massage.

    Best of all, no one got electrocuted (that we know of).

    Advertiser: Kit Kat
    Agencies: J. Walter Thompson, Mindshare
    VP Creative & CCO: Rodolfo Borrell
    Associate Creative Directors: Andres Norato and Claudia Murillo
    Creative director: Jaime Perea
    Senior Art director: Nicolas Acosta
    VP Client Services: Antonio Abello
    Account director: Lisseth Trejos
    Advertiser supervisors: Juan David Rico, Carlos Madriñan, Andres Trochez, Maria Clemencia Espinosa

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    After last year's brutal weather, folks in the Boston area might not be screaming "Snow day!" quite as exuberantly upon the arrival of this winter's first big storm. But New England Patriots hero Rob Gronkowski seems to have no problem with snowflakes as he headlines this epic, two-minute cold-weather commercial from Nike—ushering in the season of flurries, frozen feet and star-studded neighborhood Snow Bowls.

    More than 20 pro athletes turn out for the ad, from Wieden + Kennedy in Portland, Ore., and Biscuit Filmworks director Steve Rogers. And no matter their actual sport, they all seem to be playing Winter Olympians for the day—if things like snowball fighting, snow-plow jumping and needlessly shattering lots of frosted glass could be Olympic sports.

    In the end, they line up for a football game—fittingly, as the ad will get its first airing Thursday night during the Patriots-Dolphins game. (In fact, the pecking order of celebs here seems inspired by that very game, with Dolphins defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh being the first character Gronkowski encounters in his SportsCenter-like neighborhood, where only pro sportsmen and -women seem to live. Never mind that it's actually 70 degrees right now in Foxborough, Mass., where tonight's game will be played.)

    The spot pushes Nike's Hyperwarm baselayer of workout apparel. And in fact, kicking off winter with a tribute to the Hyperwarm line is becoming something of a tradition for Nike. This spot is more straightforward than last year's, though, which was more theatrical and featured Chris O'Dowd as a weatherman of sorts, hyperbolically describing the effects of cold on the human body.

    All the typical Nike energy and humor are there in the new spot, although it must be said that the constant falling snow obscures the athletes a bit and maybe dulls the impact somewhat. (These would be first world art director problems.)

    Along with Gronk and Suh, the ad serves up Odell Beckham Jr., Le'Veon Bell, Eugenie Bouchard, Antonio Brown, Elena Delle Donne, Marlen Esparza, Paula Findlay, Lauren Fisher, Paul George, A.J. Green, Draymond Green, Luke Kuechly, Sydney Leroux, Carli Lloyd, Marcus Mariota, LeSean McCoy, Ben Roethlisberger, Eric Weddle and Steven Stamkos.

    Also check out the behind-the-scenes video, which features many of the athletes reminiscing about their favorite snow day memories.

    Client: Nike
    Project: North America Cold Weather | "Snow Day"

    Agency: Wieden + Kennedy, Portland, Ore.
    Creative Directors: Chris Groom, Stuart Brown
    Copywriter: Brock Kirby
    Art Director: Lee Jennings
    Producer: Jeff Selis
    Agency Executive Producer: Matt Hunnicutt
    Designers: Edgar Morales, Seth Shelman
    Studio Manager: Alicia Kuna
    Motion: Sarah Gamazo, Jeff Ackley, Oliver Rokoff, Adam Sirkin
    Color, Retouching: Frazer Goodbody, Saskia Thomson
    Art Buyer: Grace Petrenka
    Digital Production: Patrick Marzullo, Ben Oh, Evelyn Loomis, Jenna Simon
    Digital, Social Strategy: Reid Schilperoort
    Strategic Planning: Andy Lindblade, Brandon Thornton, Reid Schilperoort
    Media, Communications Planning: Daniel Sheniak, Reme DeBisschop, Lisa Feldhusen, Natalie Welch
    Account Team: Karrelle Dixon, Corey Woodson, Shinya Kamata
    Project Manager: Andrea Nelsen
    Business Affairs: Amber Lavender
    Head of Production: Ben Grylewicz
    Executive Creative Directors: Mark Fitzloff, Joe Staples

    Production Companies: Biscuit Filmworks; Revolver
    Director: Steve Rogers
    Executive Producers: Shawn Lacy, Holly Vega, Dana Balkin
    Line Producer: Jay Veal
    Director of Photography: Alwin Kuchler
    First Assistant Director: Craig Owens

    Editing Company: Joint Editorial
    Editor: Peter Wiedensmith
    Assistant Editor: Dylan Sylwester
    Post Producer: Jen Milano
    Executive Producer: Leslie Carthy
    Operations Director: Mary Zuleger

    Visual Effects Company: The Mission
    Lead Flame: Joey Brattesani
    Animation Director: Piotr Karwas
    On-Set Supervisor: Michael Gibson
    Visual Effects Producer: Diana Cheng
    Managing Director: Michael Pardee
    Executive Producer: Ellen Turner

    Music, Sound Company: Joint Editorial
    Sound Designer: Noah Woodburn
    Song (if applicable): The Payback

    Mix Company: Joint Editorial
    Mixer: Noah Woodburn
    Producer: Jen Milano

    Production Company: Zach King Vines
    Director, Editor: Zach King
    Producer: Jadon Gauthier

    Photographer: Gary Land
    Production Company: Avenue 53
    Producer: Greg Broussard

    Color: Company 3
    Colorist: Siggy Ferstl

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    You might not actually want to work out in denim jeans. But it's good to know (maybe?) that you could—and that the heads of anyone watching you in the gym might just explode with admiration (and/or confusion?) as they witness a new kind of workout clothes in action.

    This is all according to 180 Amsterdam's latest bit of eye-popping absurdity for fashion label Replay, makers of the aforementioned denim gym pants.

    Replay has come up with something called Hyperskin—a material that comes in handy in the so-called "Athleisure" category, which seems to be mostly about exercising in apparel that looks like street clothes. To show Hyperskin in action, the brand recruited Russian supermodel Irina Shayk (aka, Cristiano Ronaldo's ex-girlfriend) for an explosive product demo—executing a series of yoga moves, while wearing the product, which literally blows the minds of those around her.

    180 and Replay have traded in this kind of stylish preposterousness before, notably in their 2014 "Eco Warriors" spot. The new commercial was directed by the duo Tell No One and produced by Good Egg in London.

    "We're hyper proud to be introducing the new Hyperskin," says Replay CEO Matteo Sinigaglia. "Wellness is no longer a trend; it's the perfect balance between body, soul and the environment: it's a philosophy and a lifestyle. Replay took this as an inspiration to merge it with its denim DNA and created Hyperskin: a revolutionary product able to combine performance, lightweight and 100 percent natural fibers."

    If they can make workout clothes that look like pajamas, then we might consider it.

    Client: Replay
    CEO - Matteo Sinigaglia
    Director of Communications - Lorenza De Mattia

    Agency: 180 Amsterdam
    President and Chief Creative Officer - Al Moseley
    Managing Director - Stephen Corlett
    Executive Creative Directors - Dan Treichel & Dave Canning
    Creative Directors - Martin Beswick & Stephane Lecoq
    Graphic Designer - Kate Shearer
    Brand Director - Katharina Schablitzki
    Account Manager - Nicole Scopes
    Planner - Clare Satterthwaite
    Producer - Meredith Bergonzi
    Business Affairs - Pamela Villaflores

    Print Production
    Photographer - George Harvey, London
    Retouching - Jan Willem Dijkstra @ Left Hand Retouch

    Film Production
    Production Company - Good Egg, London
    Director - Tell No One
    DP - Ben Fordesman
    Producer - Malachy McAnenny
    Executive Producer - Julia Reed
    Casting - Sophie North @ Sophie North Casting
    Editing - Final Cut, London
    Editor - Suzy Davis
    Assistant Editor - Peter O'Donovan
    Offline Producer - Frankie Elster
    Post Production - MPC, London
    Flame Supervisor - Iain Murray
    Online Producer - Hannah Ruddleston
    Sound - Randall MacDonald @ Wave Studios

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    Think!, the long-running safe-driving campaign from Britain's Department for Transport, has created some of the world's most creepy, shocking and gruesome PSAs. (Remember this dead kid? Thought so.) But now, with help from AMV BBDO, the campaign is getting more lighthearted—with some special out-of-home executions in the countryside.

    To get across the message that unexpected hazards can lie behind blind curves—and that you need to brake before the curve, not on it—the agency recruited some unique brand ambassadors. It partnered with a farmer to spray-paint safety messages on sheep, cows, tractors and trucks so that people driving through the country would rethink their behavior.

    Check out video from the stunt below, and be thankful you just watched a Think! ad that doesn't make you want to head to the bathroom to be sick.

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    Wolves are everywhere in manly man advertising like the Old Spice campaign. But there is such a thing as too much wolf, apparel company Johnnie-O claims in a new commercial from ad agency Ignited.

    At issue is how far down guys should unbutton their shirts on a night out. Too far down, and you'll gross people out with "Too Much Wolf." Too buttoned up, and you'll suffer from "Too Little Wolf" and be just as much of an outcast.

    Johnnie-O demonstrates both extremes below, with help from actual wolves—as well as Vine star Arielle Vandenberg.

    As you can see, Johnnie-O has devised a solution: the Tweener Button, designed by Johnnie-O founder John O'Donnell (the brother of actor Chris, by the way). It's an extra, hidden button in between the second and third buttons, and it could just be your savior.

    Though, as a rule, it's probably wise to avoid any dudes who bring stuffed wolves with them to the bar.

    Client: Johnnie-O
    Founder: John O'Donnell
    CEO: Dave Gato
    Marketing Director: Kim Rohm
    Marketing Specialist: John Graham
    Ecom Manager: Clare Berner
    Ecom Asst Manager: Jessica Cashen
    Graphic Designer: Melissa Castro

    Agency: Ignited
    CCO: Eric Springer
    Art Director: Amy Matheu
    Copywriter: Joseph Katool
    Copywriter: Brian Hallisey
    Agency Producer: Eric Edmonds
    Account Director: Christel Roldan

    Production Company: Rodeo Show
    Director: Michael Koerbel
    Producer: Raphael Leopold
    Line Producer: Chris Ruiz
    DP: Joshua Hess
    Sound Design/Sound Mixing: Endless Noise
    Music/original song: Drew Cole

    0 0

    Remember when a "happy ending" used to mean something else?

    We do, too. And Torch is dedicated to keeping your kids in the dark (literally, when it's bedtime) as long as possible.

    An anthem spot and a handful of shorter ads Torch—a router that promises better parental controls over kids' browsing habits—provide funny illustrations of how the product protects against inappropriate search results for terms like "happy ending," "pearl necklace" and "tossed salad," which seem innocent to a youngster, but could easily lead down a rabbit hole to adult content.

    The ads keep the more depraved implications an inside joke between adult viewers, and show only G-rated interpretations.

    Ad agency Fancy Rhino in Chattanooga, Tenn., where former McCann exec Vann Graves is now president and chief creative officer, created the commercials for Torch. The agency is also an investor in the online safety startup.

    If the brand's products perform as well as promised (features include mandatory time-outs, site blocking and a comprehensive browsing history), parents can rest assured that kids will be forced to learn graphic slang the same way they did—from their more advanced, and less policed, classmates.

    Client: Torch
    Product: Torch Router
    Campaign: "The Right Click"
    Agency: Fancy Rhino
    Creative Director: Vann Graves
    Copywriters: Vann Graves / Joe Scalo
    Art Directors: Joe Scalo
    Production Company: Aero Films
    Director: Jason Farrand
    Producer: Sloane Skala
    Director of Photography: Julian Whatley
    Editor: Michael Distelkamp

    0 0

    In this ad for Indian dating site TrulyMadly, two women have a musical battle to determine whose would-be suitor is the creepiest.

    Performing in the Qawwali style, a type of music originally used by Sufis for devotional purposes, the first group of women—those in pink—start by saying there are two folders on Facebook: one for friends ... and one for creeps.

    After describing their Facebook troll, and blaming Mark Zuckerberg for his part in the whole situation, a second group of women challenges the first by talking about a creep who stalks their protagonist in real life. In their narrative, he shows up at her door as an elevator man and pizza delivery guy to say things like, "I delivered your pizza, will you deliver my babies?"

    Toward the end, the similarities between both stalkers become too eerie to ignore (for example, both creepers call the oject of their affection "bulbul," the Hindi term for nightingale), and they realize the same person is stalking them both. The tagline tells you that TrulyMadly's verified profiles help weed out unwanted attention.

    If only more ads relied on good old musical throwdowns to battle their way to a message.

    0 0

    A long time ago, in a suburb far, far away ...

    Duracell powers a fantastical Christmas-morning Star Wars battle of epic proportions in this holiday commercial from Anomaly that breaks Friday nationwide on TV and onlline.

    A fun watch in its own right, the minute-long spot—which rolls out ahead of the Dec. 17 release of Star War: Episode VII—The Force Awakens—speaks volumes about the Endor-size influence that entertainment franchises exert on the modern concept of imaginative play, and the way brands can tap into that dynamic.

    In the ad, a 14-year-old boy and his 9-year-old sister get their Force on in a major way, wielding Duracell-powered lightsabers to fend off an onslaught of Stormtroopers on Yuletide morning at their upper-middle-class home. Their weapons shimmer and sizzle, the halls of the house shudder with fiery explosions, and R2-D2 and C-3PO (the latter voiced by franchise star Anthony Daniels) make a cameo appearance.

    Ultimately, the action spills out into the snowy backyard, where towering Imperial Walkers loom menacingly in the distance and Star Destroyers and TIE fighters blacken the sky.

    The visual and audio presentation are especially impressive, as you'd expect, given that Duracell partnered with Disney, Lucasfilm, Industrial Light & Magic and Skywalker Sound to achieve an authentic, exhilarating look and feel.

    "Everything was very genuine to the Star Wars universe," Seth Jacobs, Anomaly group creative director, tells Adweek. "So much so that our costumes needed to travel from The Force Awakens set in London to Los Angeles, where we were shooting. Then they were watched over by Disney security 24 hours a day for the duration of our shoot."

    Pacific Rim's Shawn Levy, who directed the Night at the Museum films, does a fine job of integrating the Christmas-morning happenings with the more dynamic Star Wars footage.

    Of course, the sci-fi thrills are taking place entirely in the kids' imaginations. And that's the whole point, says Duracell marketing director Jeff Jarrett, as the brand, in its first major Star Wars sponsorship, attempts to tie in with the beloved franchise's facility to inspire hours of inventive play.

    That's not to say, however, that kids are the target here. In fact, Duracell is going after the parents—they are, after all, "the ones who buy batteries," says Jarrett.

    "Parents grew up with Star Wars," Jarrett adds. "They did that [imaginative play] themselves. Some of them are still doing it," if only at conventions and costume parties or in their daydreams. And Duracell hopes to leverage that deep, generational connection with this campaign, Jarrett says.

    The full spot will appear on YouTube, Hulu, Facebook, Twitter and various other venues, as well as in cinemas, where the movie-quality effects should really shine. Edits will run on shows such as Dr. Ken, Let's Make a Deal and The Price Is Right.

    On a deeper level, the push underscores the power that films, TV shows, video games and media in general exert over our collective playtime. I'd wager that everyone's memories of childhood involve entertainment franchises to some extent. And that's not meant as a criticism. They serve as a cultural repository of ideas and images we dip into as needed for inspiration. In the case of long-running favorites like Star Wars, Star Trek and James Bond, this effect is even more pronounced because of the generational pull.

    "I remember playing with these battery-powered Star Wars toys as a kid, pretending that I was a Jedi and trying to save the galaxy," says Anomaly's Jacobs. "Now that we've been working on this project for the past year, I've been getting my kids into the series, because I wanted to share that experience with them. I went on eBay and bought the same toys that I used to play with, and sure enough, they still work! They're hooked on Star Wars. My son's going as Darth Vader for Halloween. I'll be his loyal Stormtrooper, of course."

    Whether Duracell's strategy will pay off in a sluggish market for alkaline batteries is anyone's guess. For most folks, one pack of C-cells is pretty much the same as another. That said, this well-executed appeal to nostalgia, and evoking a sense of shared play, might be enough for some parents to remember the Duracell name.

    One positive indicator for the brand, perhaps, is Star Wars' potent ability to make grown-ups feel like kids again.

    "C-3PO and R2-D2—you see them on film all the time, but meeting them in real life leaves you kind of starstruck," Jacobs recalls. "We were talking with the C-3PO actor before he got in costume, and it was just a normal conversation, but as soon as he's in the suit and talking to you in character, the only thing you can think is, 'Whoa! C-3PO knows my name!' "

    Client: Duracell
    Spot: "Battle for Christmas Morning"

    Agency: Anomaly
    Chief Creative Officer: Mike Byrne
    Group Creative Director: Seth Jacobs
    Senior Copywriter: Barry Katz
    Senior Art Director: Alex Kaplan
    Head of Production: Andrew Loevenguth
    Senior Producer: Matt Flaherty
    Business Director: Damien Reid
    Account Director: Matt Nigro
    Accout Supervisor: Carmen Cramer
    Account Executive: Sam Gray
    Project Manager: Megan Enneking
    Business Affairs: Marissa Burnett

    Production Company: Pacific Rim Films
    Director: Shawn Levy
    Executive Producers: Annie Johnson, Bryan Mitchell
    Producer: Rob Newman
    Director of Photography: Dan Mindel
    First Assistant Director: Bruce Moriarty
    Production Designer: Tom Meyer
    Wardrobe Stylist: Christine Wada
    Casting: Lisa Fields, Los Angeles; Tesley+Co., New York

    Lucas Film
    Creative Directors: Ali Compercio, Derek Stothard

    Editing: Arcade Edit
    Editor: Jeff Ferruzzo
    Executive Producer: Sila Soyer
    Producer: Fanny Cruz
    Flame Artist: Tristian Wake
    Assistant Editor: Mark Popham

    Postproduction: Industrial Light & Magic
    Visual Effects Supervisor: Nigel Sumner
    Producer: Megan Matousek

    Telecine: Company 3
    Colorist: Stefan Sonnenfeld

    Sound Mix: Skysound
    Audio Engineer, Sound Design: Chris Scarabosio
    Music Editor: Dean Menta
    Producer: Matthew Wood

    Music, Composer: John Williams
    Tracks: Star Wars Theme
    -Fighting Destroyer Droids
    -Ben Kenobi's Death, Tie Fighter Attack


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