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Breaking News in Advertising, Media and Technology

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    LAS VEGAS—Like many agency creatives this year, Joe Corr and Corey Szopinski came to CES to soak up the leading edge of tech and see how CP+B's brands might benefit from it.

    The agency's two executive creative technology directors—Corr holds that title at the Boulder office, while Szopinski leads tech at CP+B Los Angeles—spoke with Adweek about the dominance of automotive and voice technologies at CES this year. 

    They also explained what makes their client Domino's such a force in tech, and how L.A.'s NBA2K client put tech to fascinating use through a partnership with Fitbit. 

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    The iPhone 7 Plus takes such great portraits, everyone you run into on the street will want one—whether you actually know them or not.

    Apples latest ad, which aired during NFL football this weekend and on Sunday night's Golden Globes, takes place in a Greek seaside town, where a young woman is visiting her grandma—or, in the local language, her "yia yia."

    The younger woman snaps a photo of the elder. It draws such vocal praise that soon, everyone else in the cafe is clamoring for their own, sparking a chain reaction through the streets. Soon, she's capturing a parade of local characters—mailman, baker, fisherman, barber, priest—anyone who can get in front of her camera.

    It's all to promote the "Portrait" mode on the smartphone's photo app, which uses the dual-lens setup on the iPhone 7 Plus's rear-facing camera to better measure depth, and sharpen the focus on the subject while blurring the background. It also falls, aptly, under Apple's "Practically Magic" tagline, the tech-heralding bit of pith that smartly evokes Arthur C. Clarke's oft-cited third law—or perhaps more accurately, leverages its evolution into pop mythology.

    That "magic" is, here, as in other recent Apple ads, largely about the smartphone as a vehicle for better storytelling—vividly photographing an international trip, or crisply filming your daughter's part in the school play, or adventurously documenting a city during the darkest hours of the morning—all in ways that previous, lesser technologies couldn't handle.

    While some of the brand's older advertising has also played with that creative impulse as a tongue-in-cheek vehicle to fame, the personal, more heartfelt positioning (even when humorous) perfectly leans into the psychology of what it's actually selling as upscale hardware in a mobile-driven, socially connected, image-saturated era—a more facile, flattering and arresting window between your life and the wider world.

    While the new ad might risk seeming to poke fun at yokels who've never seen a camera before, its spirit is friendlier than that, if plenty contrived. Their vanity is the universal kind—everyone wants to look better than they might. And in this saga, the true hero is the young woman, who is burnishing, saving and sharing her experiences with rich personalities in a quaint locale—just like you might wish to do. 

    Still, it's probably best you don't have to nail it in just one take.

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    For fans who didn't know that A-list movie star Drew Barrymore is shilling for a Weight Watchers-like program, surprise! And for those who didn't know she's playing a cannibal in her new Netflix show: double surprise!

    As we mentioned last night, those two revelations—the first one's not exactly true, but the second definitely is—came via a new ad campaign that kicked off during Sunday night's Golden Globes for the upcoming black comedy Santa Clarita Diet. The 10-episode show, launching Feb. 3 on the prolific streaming service, also stars Timothy Olyphant, who plays Barrymore's real estate broker (non-zombie) husband.

    The campaign also includes out-of-home billboards in major markets, print and digital ads, intentionally leans into the traditional tropes of weight-loss marketing. Bankable celebrity? Check. Testimonial-style spot about how great she feels? Check. Flattering shots of the star twirling around in a body-hugging outfit? Check.

    But this spokeswoman isn't touting juice cleanses, point systems or green shakes. The first clue that this isn't a Jenny Craig ad comes fairly quickly in the 30-second spot.

    "I can satisfy all my cravings and eat whoever I want," says Barrymore. And though she's in-character as Sheila, a suburban mom, the ad never makes that clear. Only when she starts talking about eating "the food that deserves it" and dipping into a grisly bowl of fake flesh and eyeballs might viewers catch on to the real message.

    When she asks if you're "ready to take your life to a whole new level of wow," with a crimson streak of blood dripping from her mouth, there's no longer any question that this is a tongue-in-cheek (literally?) ad for a twisted piece of entertainment.

    The work was created by Los Angeles-based Stun, a creative agency, commercial and branded content production company that collaborated with Netflix for the debut of the new series from Better Off Ted creator Victor Fresco.

    The comedy, which also features Nathan Fillion, is set in L.A.'s bedroom community of Santa Clarita, where Sheila goes through "a dramatic change," sending her loved ones' lives "down a road of death and destruction … but in a good way," according to Netflix's description.

    There's also a new ad with Olyphant, which you can see below. 

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    Looking for procrastination candy? Netflix has launched the Flix Arcade, an 8-bit infinite runner game that's about as simple and uncomplicated as your fond memories of the '80s.

    Created by The Glitch in Mumbai, India, the game lets you play Pablo Escobar from Narcos, Piper Chapman from Orange Is the New Black, Mike Wheeler from Stranger Things, or Marco Polo from Marco Polo—odd, given that the latter show was canceled in December. 

    But points for nostalgia. We'll remember the good times.

    Press the spacebar once to jump, twice to superjump. Music, settings and bad guys change based on the universe you select. Play Mike as the Demogorgon pursues him, or Piper as she hunts chickens in prison. 

    Avoid bad guys and grab enough goodies for a Power-Up ... which usually involves a cool secondary force, like Hundred Eyes or Eleven, kicking ass on your behalf.

    The game is being promoted on Netflix's Spanish and Indian social media accounts. Here's the video, which is almost funner than its subject:

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    Here's a PSA campaign that takes the idea of medium-as-message to a higher level.

    Created for Uruguay's Association of Cannabis Studies, the out-of-home initiative features three posters printed on paper made from marijuana. Copy reminds the public about the dangers of operating a vehicle under the influence of pot, which Uruguay fully legalized for production and sale in 2013.

    Each of the signs measures 5.6 feet high by 3 feet wide and carries the tagline, "If you smoked, don't drive." They sprouted just after Christmas in highly trafficked neighborhoods of Montevideo, and will stay on the streets for a few more weeks.

    "We reasoned that if posters made out of pot gave you advice about safer driving, it was probably the most ideal way in which marijuana can actually be beneficial to someone while behind the wheel," says Juan Ciapessoni, co-founder and chief creative officer of The Electric Factory, which developed the campaign with outdoor ad firm JCDecaux.

    Once the fibrous hemp was shredded, flattened and dried, the sheets were painstakingly hand-crafted, just as an artisan might create specialty papers from scraps of recycled material. A silk-screening process was used to apply the text. (Ciapessoni declined to reveal how much weed was used to create the posters, nor would he divulge its source.)

    Sure, it's a gimmick to grab attention, but "the main objective of all of this is to make people understand how important is to be very responsible when driving," Ciapessoni says. "It was equally important for us to send a big message so that it will have meaningful social impact."

    Oh, the signs are called "Potsters"—a pun that might be funnier if you're stoned. At least the work is less panicky than Colorado's drugged-driving PSAs from a few months back.

    Note to vandals: If you're thinking of stealing the signs and, well, trying to smoke them—you're in for one huge bummer.

    "It would be really funny, but not effective, because the process for producing the paper removed the psychoactive effect," says Ciapessoni. "So if someone smoked it, it would be like smoking a standard paper."

    Client: Association of Cannabis Studies
    Agency: The Electric Factory
    Chief Creative Director: Juan Ciapessoni
    Creative Directors: Federico Cibils & Gustavo Etchandy
    Art Directors: Javier Gómez, Juan Diego Vispo
    Producer: Milena Mariño
    Film Production: The Electric Factory
    Director: Piter Moreira
    Executive Director: Federico Masini

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    When Kyrie Irving improvs on the court, it's like Questlove shredding a drum solo.

    The two stars duet in a new ad from Nike and R/GA Los Angeles promoting the Kyrie 3 sneaker. The Cleveland Cavalier point guard dribbles, crossing over and changing tempo with dizzying precision, while the Roots drummer and frontman, nee Ahmir Khalib Thompson, throws off rapid-fire syncopations.

    It's an impressive, brooding performance, a departure from the agency's goofier but plenty entertaining promos for previous versions of Irving's namesake footwear—like the Ky-rispy Kreme donut edition of the Kyrie 2. But the new ad still plays on a similar theme as previous campaigns, which emphasized the baller's "unexpected moves."

    It's also a refreshing testament to the power of a simple idea, well executed. The thud of the ball bouncing on the floor blends with the thump of the kick drum, tightening the metaphor. These are two players at the top of their game, and even if it's hard to believe buying Nike's shoe will make you anywhere near as good as them, it's impossible not to stop and take note.

    Client: Nike
    Agency: R/GA Los Angeles
    Directors: Matt & Mark Hoffman

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    The Room, a 2003 romantic drama from director Tommy Wiseau, is apparently so bad it's good. It's become a staple of midnight cult screenings, and not because of its high quality. As the film's Wikipedia entry so succinctly puts it:"The Room has been critically panned for its acting, screenplay, dialogue, production values, score, direction and cinematography."

    How do you advertise the screenings, then? As honestly as you can.

    Adman Ricc Webb, who holds the title of ideation director at agency 1000heads in London, has designed a poster for a February screening of the film at the Prince Charles Cinema in Leister Square. And as you can see, it highlights negative reviews of the movie very prominently.

    The anti-superlatives include zingers like "You really can't believe how terrible The Room is" and "Trust me, this is the worst movie you will ever see ever in your entire life. Ever." All of which might actually entice people to show up—to see whether it's as wretched as advertised.

    Webb designed the poster and paid for its placement himself. It went up recently in London's Liverpool Street subway station.

    The ad is amusing just as a piece of comedy, but Webb, perhaps in a bit of a stretch, says he's also trying to make a broader statement about how a lot of movie marketing is misleading. By which he presumably means horrible movies have a lipsticked-pig aspect to them with their flashy posters.

    "Every day traveling around London I see a piece of advertising that makes me wonder who the idiots are approving half this stuff," Webb says. "Instead of getting frustrated, I decided to start my own experiments. Ideas designed to skip the politics, bureaucracy and approvals that usually stifle the creative process and show people what's possible with a little effort and imagination. Marketing should be fun and entertaining … not misleading and full of BS."

    For its part, the Prince Charles Cinema is delighted with the ad.

    "When Ricc first pitched us his idea for a 'truthful' poster for Tommy Wiseau's The Room, we loved it, but never for a minute did we think he'd actually go through with it," says Paul Vickery, head programmer at the cinema. "But he has, and the smiles haven't left the faces of the team since. We can't wait to see it up and the faces of the commuters as they see it on their morning trip to work!"

    The February screening of The Room will be take place Feb. 8-11. 

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    My local no-kill shelter's low-budget cat ad just went viral.

    Furkids is an Atlanta shelter that's a short distance from my house. I've donated, am on their email list, and have frequented their thrift shop. So it was a surprise to wake up one morning and find that Reddit had rocketed this little shelter to stardom overnight.

    The ad is titled "Kitty Kommercial," and it's already reached 4 million views on YouTube just days after hitting Reddit's front page due to an anonymous poster.

    One of the reasons this ad is so endearing is that it can't decide what it wants to spoof. It starts with a tongue-in-cheek poke at infomercials and transitions smoothly into mocking used car ads (much like this viral spot from the Calgary Humane Society, which also sells cats like used cars) before rounding out its nearly three minutes with a send-up of Sarah McLachlan's tear-jerking SPCA PSA.

    The star of the spot, Atlanta native Paul Preston, isn't an actor or hired talent but a contractor with a rental property company whose sister, Helen Preston, volunteers at Furkids. It was Helen who came up with the idea, wrote the spot, and recommended Paul as the lead. But it's adoption team manager Nicole Neill who steals the show with her impersonation of an inflatable air dancer.

    Apparently, it took about 30 minutes to shoot the ad, and while the total cost hasn't been revealed, it was in the neighborhood of a couple of cans of cat food for the feline stars.

    The outpouring of support and supplies has outpaced anything the shelter has seen in its 15-year history, with over 9,000 messages from people around the world, lots of packages from Amazon, and inquiries from the morning news shows. (We requested an interview with them, but they're a little too swamped to make it happen right now.) They did post a thank-you note and a video of their kitties opening up all their presents.

    Human stars aside, the whole thing is about the kitties and puppers that the cage-free, no-kill shelter helps. Over the years, I've watched Furkids post about their rescues of some of the most needy, injured or last-chance animals they've saved, and viral success couldn't have happened to a nicer bunch of people.

    Why, look: Here's a donation link.

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    Goodbye, to-do list. Hi, rum and cool mist."

    Nick Offerman, just off his visit to CES, returns to narrate another ad for holiday rental company HomeAway, a year after making his debut with the brand. And once again, he's preaching—this time in rhyme—the benefits of a HomeAway holiday home compared to the pitfalls of hotels and sharing-economy accommodations like Airbnb. 

    The new spot, from Saatchi & Saatchi London, will air in Europe and the U.S. on TV and online in 120-, 60-, 30-, 20- and 15-second versions. It was filmed in New Zealand by MJZ director Tom Kuntz, who is famous for his freewheeling spots with often oddball characters (as well as, of course, "The Man Your Man Could Smell Like" for Old Spice). 

    Check out the HomeAway ad below, in which unsavory characters and awkward situations doom non-HomeAway vacationers, while those who do rent through the service are immersed in a kind of holiday nirvana.

    HomeAway is referencing the chaos of current events as one more reasons for vacationers to choose its service. 

    "The weight of all that is happening in the world, from politics to our daily routines, has everyone in search of relief. People want to get away from it all, to disconnect and spend time with loved ones," says Mariano Dima, HomeAway's chief marketing officer. "Holiday rentals are the ultimate solution because they offer the space and privacy that other accommodations just can't provide, so we created this campaign to show everyone how much better renting a whole home can be."

    "We thought we'd heard all the reasons there are to get away from it all, then 2016 turned up and dealt us a whole load more," says Andy Jex, executive creative director at Saatchi London. "With HomeAway, you get the whole house, so we thought we'd go the whole hog, with an all-singing-extravaganza-ode to getting HomeAway from it all. It just felt right."

    Client: Homeaway
    Title: Get Homeaway From It All
    Agency: Saatchi & Saatchi London
    Executive Creative Directors: Andy Jex & Rob Potts
    Creatives: Ben Robinson & Mike Whiteside
    Planners: Raquel Chicourel & Kinga Papp
    Account Handlers: Jon Bryars & Laura Jones
    TV Producer: Josh Sanders
    Media Buying Agency: Blue 449
    Media Planner: James Shoreland
    Production Company: MJZ
    Director: Tom Kuntz
    Producer: Suza Horvat, MJZ
    Offline Editor: Russell Icke, Whitehouse Post
    Sound Designer: Parv Thind, Wave
    Audio Postproduction Company: Wave
    Original Music Composition: Wake the Town
    Colorist: Stefan Sonnenfeld, Company 3
    DOP: Hoyte Van Hoytema
    Production Designer: Jahmin Assa
    Postproduction Company: Electric Theatre Collective
    Postproducton Producer: Arianna Maniscalco, Electric Theatre Collective
    VFX Supervisors: Luke Todd, Julien Soulage
    2D Artists: Eileen Chan, Toby Aldridge, Emir Hasham, Frederick Heymans, Simon Richardson, Billy Stockwell, Christopher Fraser, Courtney Pryce
    AFX: Bob Wolf 
    CG Artists: Perrine Renard, Baptiste Roy
    Service Production Company: Smasher, Auckland NZ

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    To promote its golden-tubed Big Shot Mascara by Colossal, Maybelline is engaging in two firsts—working with beauty influencers, and using a man as the face of its campaign.

    Manny Gutierrez, known to followers as @MannyMUA733, is an openly gay beauty influencer who's done makeup videos with brands like Grindr Hookup. And while every male star you know wears makeup for work, Manny's made the act of male glamming feel somehow both revolutionary and a little more normal ... because we still live in a culture where makeup is mostly associated with women.

    Aptly, Manny's Instagram profile leads with, "I think boys deserve just as much cosmetic recognition."

    For Maybelline, Manny encourages viewers of all genders to "lash like a boss." Check him out in "That Boss Life," a branded video series that also features beauty influencer Shayla Mitchell:

    The New York Times points out that beauty contracts are a brass ring for celebrities—a nod to a rising profile, broadening visibility while padding their wallets. The beauty and fashion industries also pave the way for new norms when something is finally drawn into their ranks, be it aged beauty or cross-dressing.

    So, it's good news that Maybelline isn't even the first beauty brand to welcome a male face into its lofty midst. In October, Cover Girl tapped makeup artist James Charles—who drew media attention for retaking his senior class photos because he didn't like the highlighter on his cheekbones—to star as its first Cover Boy. 

    Brands like Milk Makeup and Anastasia Beverly Hills also feature men in campaigns. And last fall, Giorgio Armani launched a gender-neutral lip balm called Him/Her Lipcare, building on existing male makeup lines by Tom Ford and Marc Jacobs.

    A 2013 JWT survey of 1,000 men in the U.S. and U.K. found that 54 percent of men use skincare products like moisturizer and eye cream. A past British poll by RoxyPalace found that men spend just £50 (about $60) less per month on grooming products than women (about $2,172 versus women's $2,994 per year). 

    Not to say we don't yet have a long way to go. Manny's Maybelline contract also follows a social fracas over ASOS's male choker necklaces. Allure's David Yi said the bizarre, but unsurprising, backlash "promotes the dangerous sentiment that men are supposed to adhere to hypermasculine culture." 

    Sexism: It cuts both ways. (Or as Yi writes, "Equality. It goes both ways.") 

    In a statement, Manny says he's "thrilled to be able to work with a global brand like Maybelline that is recognizing male influencer talent and is willing to shine a spotlight on it."

    Here's to a world in which one's genitals no longer dictate what you can wear on your face (or otherwise), much less how safe you feel walking down the street. Below, catch Manny and Shayla in part two of "The Boss Life."

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    During this weekend's NFL playoffs on NBC, Microsoft debuted "Football, Teamwork and Technology," an ad featuring the Eagles, the California School for the Deaf's football team. 

    "We're a brotherhood, we're a team," a player signs. 

    Football is among the American sports that strikes an immediate emotional chord. In this case, it's also compelling to see how teamwork and communication—so critical to sports philosophy—play out among the Eagles. It's not something we get to see often. 

    And here's what we see: less shouting and more tactility, with pensive shots of eyes that follow and interpret the split-second movements of hands, faces and bodies. Collaboration, we suddenly realize, is tangible—something you can see and touch. Amid all this are shots of plays, made mobile and more shareable by the magic of technology. 

    "We use the Surface to communicate and prepare," the player signs, and at the end, a narrator drives the tablet's value add home: "For any player, for any coach, for any team, the art of collaboration builds champions." 

    Get it? Because the Surface facilitates collaboration. We can roll with that, but something happens between that statement and the tagline that immediately follows—"Empowering us all: Microsoft." 

    How do you go from being one useful tool in a collaborative arsenal to Empowerer in Chief? 

    If you're a high school football fan who hasn't heard of the Eagles, that has more to do with the priorities of broadcast than its capacity to decimate. Microsoft made a smart choice in associating the Surface with a team that's both serious on-field and a blossoming subject of mainstream interest. 

    In October, the Eagles were featured in ESPN's first-ever football broadcast to feature an all-deaf school, the Geico ESPN High School Football Showcase, where they destroyed Woodland Christian's Cardinals, winning 43-0. 

    In fact, over the course of its last season, the Eagles lost only twice—to the Indiana School for the Deaf, and to Berean Christian—and otherwise outscored opponents by an average margin of 52-8.

    The team was also profiled in ESPN's E:60 Silent Night Lights (shown below), and in an "Underdogs" episode for Sports Illustrated some years before. 

    When it comes to winning, technology is secondary to group cohesion. There's more to the Eagles' success than its choice of hardware—they've got discipline, brotherhood, high stakes, something to prove, and, yes, strong plays. 

    So, it isn't the Surface (much less Microsoft) that empowers the Eagles. If they had to use binder paper, or sticks and rocks, to sketch plays, we're convinced they'd be just as strong on the field.

    Instead, it's the Eagles that empower the Surface, whose track record is somewhat less objectively impressive. There's nothing wrong with being one good tool in a winning arsenal; it's a respectable position in a context that, frankly, resembles teamwork. 

    And what's kryptonite to a team? The one guy (or in this case, brand) that thinks he's responsible for all the magic. 

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    ESPN takes note of the trend toward outlandish pre-game outfits in the NBA with the latest spot in its "This Is SportsCenter" series. 

    The ad opens with Golden State Warriors star Draymond Green walking into the office rocking a stylish but not over-the-top outfit and casually greeting a security guard. SportsCenter anchors Steve Levy and John Buccigross then stroll in—wearing progressively ridiculous dress, and receiving a somewhat different reaction from the security guard. 

    Wieden + Kennedy New York's long-running "This Is SportsCenter" series reliably skewers the more ridiculous aspects of sports fandom, and the latest entry is no exception. Another staple of the series is that the network's own anchors are usually the butt of the joke, allowing them to parody trends among athletes while enlisting their participation. 

    There's an undeniable charm to seeing Buccigross stroll into work wearing fuzzy yellow earmuffs, goggles, a see-through mesh shirt and yellow pants while clutching what appears to be a studded leather bag. 

    Client: ESPN

    Agency: Wieden + Kennedy New York
    Executive Creative Directors: Karl Lieberman
    Creative Directors: Brandon Henderson, Erwin Federizo
    Art Director: NJ Placentra
    Copywriter: Alex Ledford
    Producer: Alexey Novikov
    Head of Integrated Production: Nick Setounski
    Executive Producer: Temma Shoaf
    Account Team: Mike Welch, Matt Angrisani

    Production Company: O Positive
    Director: David Shane
    Executive Producer: Marc Grill
    Director of Photography: Dave Morabito

    Editorial Company: Mackenzie Cutler
    Editor: Nick Divers
    Post Executive Producer: Sasha Hirschfeld

    VFX Company: Schmigital
    Lead Flame Artist/Creative Director: Jim Hayhow
    Assist: Joseph Miller

    Mix Company: Mackenzie Cutler
    Mixer: Sam Shaffer

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    There's a grown man loitering outside the women's room, but he's no creep. He's a single dad waiting for his young daughter. And a few years later, that same guy is getting a different bathroom door slammed in his face because his teenage offspring is "becoming a woman" but absolutely doesn't want to chat with him about it.

    A new campaign from Angel Soft intends to "uncover the insightful little moments that we can all appreciate but that you don't see much in advertising," says Karen Costello, executive creative director at Deutsch, the brand's agency.

    Three new ads continue under the brand's tagline, "Be soft. Be strong," that Deutsch kicked off about a year and a half ago with digital spots. These are the first in the series to air on TV. See the three spots here:

    As a category, toilet paper has tended to focus strictly on product attributes, not emotional heart-tugging stories, Costello says. Her team zeroed in on families, aiming to bust some gender stereotypes and find an untapped niche in the marketing message. And if consumers were touched enough to shed a few tears, well, Angel Soft can double as facial tissue.

    "We've tried to weave in the product and brand truths with some human truths," Costello says. "We're finding that intersection to be really fresh and resonant."

    "Be soft. Be strong" has so far increased Angel Soft's dollar share and bumped up sales by 6 percent, according to the Georgia-Pacific brand. It launched with a spot called "Happy Father's Day, Mom," an ode to single mothers, and continued with "Grander Parents," about grandparents raising their grandchildren (because of absentee parents).

    It's an unusual tack for toilet paper, one that Costello says will continue, given the bottom-line success and the social-media kudos garnered for the brand (thousands of likes and consumer stories shared).

    The new ads deal with the truisms of pregnancy—"I've never peed this much in my life," says the character in the spot, "Little Dude"—and a father consoling his young son about a first breakup with sweet bromides like, "When I was your age, the only girl who would talk to me was Grandma" and "I had no game, son."

    "We see families in media all the time, but sometimes it's just the surface and not always what really happens," Costello says. "We want to talk about how we actually live and highlight some of the unsung heroes."

    Client: Georgia Pacific/Angel Soft
    Chief Marketing Officer: Douwe Bergsma
    Senior Vice President, General Manager, Bath Tissue: Vivek Joshi
    Senior Marketing Director, Brand Center: Shari Neumann
    Director, Brand Building: Aviral Singh
    Senior Brand Director: Andrew Noble
    Senior Brand Manager: Todd Wingfield
    Brand Manager: Jeannie Chacko
    Associate Brand Manager: Brian Harrison
    Social Media Manager: Gisela Carapaica

    Agency: Deutsch
    Creative Credits:
    Chief Creative Officer, North America: Pete Favat
    Chief Digital Officer, North America: Winston Binch
    Chief Creative Officer: Jason Bagley
    Executive Creative Director: Karen Costello
    Creative Director: Melissa Langston-Wood
    Copywriter: Ashley Milhollin
    Art Director: Dan Rosenberg
    Director of Integrated Production: Vic Palumbo
    Executive Integrated Producer: Rachel Seitel
    Senior Integrated Producer: Jesse Ferguson
    Music Supervisor: Eryk Rich
    Senior Audio Producer Chase Butters

    Account Management Credits:
    Group Account Director: Steve Sanders
    Account Director: Lauren Pollare
    Account Executive: Bianca Brittain

    Account Planning:
    Executive Planning Director: Jeffrey Blish
    Group Planning Director: Kelsey Hodgkin
    Digital Strategist: Janet Shih
    Junior Strategist Leigh Citarella

    Business Affairs/Traffic:
    Director of Integrated Business Affairs: Abilino Guillermo
    Senior Business Affairs Manager: Terry Miglin

    CEO, North America: Mike Sheldon
    President, Los Angeles: Kim Getty

    Live Action Production Company
    Production Company: Humble
    Directors: Samuel & Gunnar
    President/ Executive Producer: Eric Berkowitz
    Executive Producer: Marc Kovacs
    Head of Production – NY Natalie Warkenthien
    Head of Production – LA Fyza Griggs
    Line Producer: Gary Romano

    Editorial Company
    Production Company: Whitehouse Post
    Editor: Heidi Black
    Producer: Annie Maldonado

    Post Facility
    Production Company: Company 3
    Senior Producer: Liza Kerlin
    Senior Colorist: David Hussey

    Production Company: Method Studios
    Executive Producer: Robert Owens
    Artist: Aiden Thomas

    Licensed/Composed Music, Credits and Track Info:
    Company Name: Yessian Music
    Track: Little Dude Stare cp3a
    Composed by: Chris Plansker
    Creative Director: Andy Grush
    Executive Producer: David Gold
    Sr. Producer: Katie Overcash

    Company Name: Yessian Music
    Track: Just Dad swk1a
    Composed by Sam Kearney
    Creative Director: Andy Grush
    Executive Producer: David Gold
    Sr. Producer: Katie Overcash

    Company Name: Yessian Music
    Track: First Breakup ajk1c
    Composed by: Ami Kozak
    Creative Director: Andy Grush
    Executive Prodcuer: David Gold
    Sr. Producer: Katie Overcash

    Audio Post Company:
    Production Company: Lime Studios
    Executive Producer: Susie Boyajan
    Mixer: Mark Meyuhas 

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    If domestic violence seems like an abstract phenomenon, this TBWA campaign from Finland will remind people that it's happening right on their doorstep.

    TBWA launched an outdoor campaign for the Helsinki Police over the Christmas holidays that had a hyperlocal, reactive element to it. When a domestic violence call into 911 (which is actually 112 in Helsinki), the agency—with help from outdoor company JCDecaux—immediately put up anti-violence PSA posters on the 15 outdoor placements nearest to the home that made the call.

    The posters stayed up for 48 hours before being swiftly removed again.

    "There have been domestic violence calls from this area within the past 48 hours," reads copy on the posters. "If you experience, witness or suspect domestic violence, call 112."


    "All JCDecaux outdoor posters have their own address, so the system picks the 15 closest posters to the crime scene and they will appear to the streets overnight," TBWA account director Juha-Matti Raunio tells AdFreak.

    The campaign featured seven such placements in 14 days. 

    "Unfortunately there are still too many domestic violence calls here in Finland," Raunio says. "In a way, this is world's first outdoor campaign you hope that no one would see, but as Finland ranks really high in domestic violence per capita, that hasn't been the case yet."

    "The second phase is planned for the spring, where well gather the learnings of the first campaign and develop it even further," adds creative director Mikko Pietilä.

    The creative itself is also innovative. It shows a kitchen scene, which during the daytime looks normal—but after dark, a background lights switches on to reveal the signs of domestic violence, like black light does at a real crime scene.

    The tagline is, "You cannot wipe off violence."

    Client: Helsinki Police Department
    Campaign: You cannot wipe off violence
    Agency: TBWA\Helsinki
    Executive Creative Director: Jyrki Poutanen
    Creative Director: Mikko Pietilä
    Account Director, VP: Juha-Matti Raunio
    Art Director: Kalle Wallin
    Copywriter: Laura Hukkanen
    Designer: Matti Virtanen
    Photographer: Mikko Ryhänen
    Film: Iiro Hokkanen

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    In rural India, people sometimes have to travel up to 50 miles just to have minor repairs made on a cell phone. Samsung is addressing this by rolling out a fleet of 535 vans to visit people who need service—and is promoting it with a heartwarming ad that's gotten more than 35 million views in less than two weeks.

    The spot, created by Cheil, shows a Samsung service van driver overcoming all sorts of obstacles to pay a visit to a girl who has called about a broken television. But only when he finally arrives at the home does he realize that he's making a very special house call.

    The ad has received a hugely positive response, which Ranjivjit Singh, CMO of Samsung India, said was most welcome as the company makes this service expansion.

    "Our new initiative of expanding to rural India, right up to the taluka level, helps us in taking care of our valued customers, wherever they are," he said. "The new campaign video gives a glimpse of yet another initiative toward our 'Make for India' commitment. We are very happy to receive an overwhelming response from consumers across India, who have given a big thumbs up to the campaign."

    Sagar Mahabaleshwarkar, chief creative officer of Cheil India, added: "Samsung is without doubt at the cutting edge of technology. But even the most advanced products need some TLC once in a while. While others might expect you to visit their service centers, Samsung visits you instead. That's the measure of Samsung's emotional investment in its customers. I am glad that the film adequately captures this warmth and commitment while balancing the rational demands of the brief."

    Client: Samsung
    Agency: Cheil

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    Winning the lottery doesn't just mean you can live that gaudy and gilded lifestyle you've always wanted. It means you'll finally have time for all that super-important charity work you've been missing. Like running through the park with a gaggle of ridiculous dogs.

    A new ad for the New York Lottery from McCann New York offers a slow-motion look at an afternoon in the life of a fictional man who is free to volunteer with rescue animals—thanks to the $1,000-a-day prize of the Cash4Life game.

    It's a relatively fresh angle for a lottery ad, when compared to marketing clichés about being able to afford absurd extravagances—like, say, hiring Cyndi Lauper for a private house concert (a New York Lottery campaign from a few years back, under a previous agency).

    But McCann and director Derek Cianfrance of Radical Media haven't abandoned the carefree humor that's also a defining characteristic of the genre, and usually helps to gloss over the seedier realities of long-shot gambling apparatus—even if the promised reward, in this case, is illustrated in spiritual rather than material terms.

    It's also consistent with the pseudo-moralistic posturing of McCann's earlier work for the brand, which cleverly skewered the absurd habits—dead bat collecting, fine wine bathing—of fantastical wealthy eccentrics, under the tagline "You'd make a better rich person." Here, that argument is implicit.

    "I'd spend more time volunteering," reads a quote from a Brooklynite answering what he'd do if he won—ostensibly the inspiration for the entire scene. But the spot is almost too careful not to frame doing good as a chore. Instead, it's clearly still about self-gratification—because never having to work again is a lighthearted affair, and not many people are rolling the dice so they can fantasize about the freedom to lead a life defined by quiet, saintly self-sacrifice. (Joining a monastery would be a surer bet.)

    Then again, Spain proved last year that lottery ads can be heartfelt, too—so long as they're shameless enough.

    Client: New York Lottery

    Agency: McCann NY
    North American Chief Creative Officer: Eric Silver
    Co-Chief Creative Officers: Sean Bryan & Tom Murphy
    Executive Creative Director: Mat Bisher
    Executive Creative Director: Dan Donovan
    Creative Director: Geoff Bentz
    Creative Director: Nic Howell
    Chief Production Officer: Nathy Aviram
    Senior Producer: Chance Bassett
    Executive Integrated Music Producer: Eric Johnson
    Music Producer: Dan Gross
    Executive Account Director: Scot Beck
    Account Director: Caroline Fuller
    Account Executive: Alesy Iturrey
    Executive Strategy Director: Mike Medeiros
    Strategy Director: Laura Frank

    Production Company: Radical Media
    Director: Derek Cianfrance
    Radical Media Executive Producer: Gregg Carlesimo
    Line Producer: Alex Orlovsky
    DP: Bob Yeoman

    Editorial Company - MackCut
    Editor: Ian Mackenzie
    Post Producer: Gina Pagano
    Colorist: Tom Poole
    Special Effects Company: Schmidigital

    "Give Back For Life" – Future Perfect
    "Have Fun For Life" – Nylon

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    Buick is officially a fan of the Super Bowl.

    The General Motors nameplate told Adweek on Wednesday that it has bought a 30-second spot on Super Bowl LI. The decision comes a year after the brand made its big-game debut with a spot starring New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. and actress/model Emily Ratajkowski. 

    Molly Peck, director of marketing at Buick, shared metrics from last year's spot and said the brand was thrilled with the performance of the comedic :30. 

    The ad led to a 50 percent increase of traffic to Buick.com on game day last year, and a 100 percent increase the day after the game, she said. Visits to the product page of the Cascada luxury convertible, which was the subject of the ad, rose 960 percent.

    The spot was also the fourth most TiVo'ed of the game, Peck added.

    "We had tremendous success," she said. "Getting out in front of 100 million people, we really saw the results, and people took notice."

    The new spot will be created by Engage M1, the agency formed by the merger last summer of DigitasLBi Detroit and Leo Burnett Detroit to handle GM business.

    Peck would not divulge details of the creative for the new spot, but said it will be part of a campaign that's been in market since 2014 and "continues to pay off."

    The ad will run during the first half of the game in a "really great placement that we're very happy with," she said. It will also continue Buick's tradition of "featuring great products, and giving consumers a smile." 

    The ad will be relased online before the game, though an exact date has not been revealed. 

    Buick's other advertising in 2016 appealed to millennials by featuring well-liked young celebrities including Ellie Kemper and Max Greenfield.

    Check out the brand's 2016 Super Bowl spot below: 


    For more Super Bowl LI news, check out Adweek's Super Bowl Ad Tracker, an up-to-date list of the brands running Super Bowl spots and the agencies involved in creating them.

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    Today, Mars North America announced that Adam Driver of Girls and Star Wars fame will play the lead role in its upcoming Super Bowl LI ad.

    Driver succeeds Willem Dafoe, who re-created a slightly different version of Marilyn Monroe's famous skirt-blowing scene during last year's game. 

    This marks the third consecutive Super Bowl appearance for Snickers' "You're Not You When You're Hungry" campaign and the brand's fifth overall. Creative will again be handled by the New York offices of BBDO, Adweek's U.S. Agency of the Year for 2015.

    "The Snickers 'You're Not You When You're Hungry' Super Bowl commercials have become an annual event," said Driver in a statement. "I'm excited to be a part of this iconic commercial moment on the world's biggest stage."

    Brand director Allison Miazga-Bedrick added, "Partnering with one of Hollywood's most popular actors is just one way we'll continue to raise the bar to deliver amazing Super Bowl spots. We know our fans are hungry for more, and we have plans that are sure to satisfy before, during and after the game."

    The first ad in the trio famously starred Steve Buscemi and Danny Trejo as "hungry" versions of Jan and Marcia Brady in what AdFreak called "one of the funniest Super Bowl spots ever."

    BBDO and Mars have yet to release any teasers for their newest collaboration.

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    Yesterday, A24—the studio behind recent eccentric word-of-mouth-driven movies like The Lobster, Moonlight and Swiss Army Man—released a mysterious trailer.

    Listed simply as "Untitled," there's little else that's known about the movie, or whatever this is, other than it takes place "in our near future," according to Facebook and Twitter posts from the studio.

    The footage that's shown is largely people staring at things, be they screens or simply the ceiling, while a series of words such as "Realize feeling" and "Identify questions" fly by. Some scenes make it appear as if it's taking place in some futuristic cityscape; others seem to be set in what looks like current suburbia.

    There's no other information that's available about the project. It's not listed on A24's website, and it doesn't seem to match any of the descriptions of what's coming up. A search for "Untitled" on IMDb doesn't yield any further clues. But what seems to be on display here is an identity-bending story focused on a handful of characters, each with their own story, though it's also unclear if there's any connective material between those stories.

    What this is for, and what the story actually entails, remain to be seen. It's just the latest in a long-line of "surprise" marketing announcements by Hollywood studios, from last year's 10 Cloverfield Lane to the sudden revelation that the movie that had been produced as The Woods was actually Blair Witch.

    More details to come as more information becomes available. 

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    From its inception, AMC's Better Call Saul has indulged in fake ads starring characters from the Breaking Bad prequel—beginning with the Albuquerque billboard from the summer of 2014 showing Bob Odenkirk as "James M. McGill, attorney at law," who eventually, of course, would become Saul Goodman.

    Now, with season 3 of Better Call Saul coming this spring, AMC has unleashed a wonderful fake TV commercial featuring one of Breaking Bad's most notorious characters, Gus Fring, pitching his infamous chicken chain, Los Pollos Hermanos.

    The ad is perfectly insipid, spoofing the anodyne blandness of so much bottom-feeding fast-food advertising. And Fring, played by Giancarlo Esposito, is perfectly sunny-faced, concealing his heart of darkness in grinning pitch for curly fries.

    See the spot here:

    Esposito shared the ad on Twitter, and hinted that Fring's backstory and rise to extreme evildoer will be told in the upcoming season of Better Call Saul. (Fans had expected as much when the first letters of each episode from last season spelled out "FRING'S BACK.")

    To say Breaking Bad/Better Call Saul fans are excited about the return of Walter White's ultimate nemesis would be an understatement.


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