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Ad of the Day: Sylvester Stallone Brings the Heat in This Ridiculous Ad for a British Bakery


Yo, Adrian! Sylvester Stallone is in this British commercial for Warburtons bakery. Guess he didn't make enough dough in Hollywood.

Sly rises to the occasion, though, in this wry-humored spot from WCRS that finds the actor pitching Warburtons management on The Deliverers, his idea for an action movie about a gung-ho, Rambo/Rocky-esque bread delivery guy.

Why cast Stallone in the two-minute ad?

"Warburtons goes to heroic lengths to deliver to 16,000 stores every day, so we needed someone who could represent that," WCRS senior account director Tim Boxall tells Adweek. "Sly is famous for playing heroes with steely determination and a never-say-die attitude, so he was the obvious choice."

Veteran TV and film director Declan Lowney gives the proceedings an appropriately slick, cinematic feel. There are lots of great one-liners—"When it comes to delivering fresh bread on time, the oven gloves are off," "Time to earn my crust"—which Sly delivers in his trademark deadpan style. Cute sight gags include Stallone waking up to Survivor's "Eye of the Tiger" (the infuriatingly catchy theme from Rocky III) and hesitating in the cab of a delivery truck before Sly-ding over to the wheel on the right side (this is England, after all).

"It took a brave client with huge ambition to buy the work," says Boxall, "which of course we were delighted with." In fact, Jonathan Warburton, chairman of the family business, does a nice turn playing himself, and even gets in the last word. (Sorry, Sly, client's prerogative.)

Marketers have been on a roll with commercials starring fading movie hunks of late, and this one's generating lots of publicity. Look for Stallone, Schwarzenegger and Van Damme to keep appearing in ads—while brands savor the sweet rewards.

"We'd always hoped the campaign would be good enough that U.K.-based journalists would want to write about it," says Boxall, "but since Warburtons' core business is U.K.-based, we'd never set our ambitions globally. To have people inquiring from around the world is a great added bonus."

Client: Warburtons
Agency: WCRS, London
Executive Creative Director: Billy Faithfull
Creatives: Andy Lee, Jonny Porthouse
Agency Producer: Sally Lipsius
Account Handling: Louise Davidson, Tim Boxall
Planning: Liz Baines
Media Agency: Mindshare
Production Company: Another Film Company
Director: Declan Lowney
Producer Simon Monhemius
DOP: Haris Zambarloukos
Editor: Leo King
Production Designer: Clare Clarkson
1st AD: Chris Kelly
Editor: Leo King/Stich
Postproduction: Jason Watt/Finish
Colorist: Paul Harrison
Lead Flame: Jason Watts
Flame: Andy Copping
Flame: Steve Murgatroyd
Lead 3D: Harin Hirani
3D: Alaric Holberton
Postproducer: Louise Unwin
Audio: Ben Leeves/Grand Central

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