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Top 10 Ads of the Week

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Faster Horses – Somerset House

Faster Horses and Somerset House, the centre for contemporary culture in the heart of London, have released a film to launch Somerset House Studios. Somerset House Studios is a new experimental workspace for artists, makers and thinkers that will officially launch on Wednesday, October 26th. An online film, called “The Spirit” and created by Faster Horses, showcases the transformed Inland Revenue offices and a selection of the resident artists’ work. The film follows the ‘spirit’ of Somerset House Studios, a mysterious silver figure on a motorbike, riding through the corridors of the building and interacting with pieces created by some of the first Somerset House Studios residents. It features a drummer in an elaborate silver costume performing in the Edmond J. Safra Fountain Court, and showcases the work of three artists: the projections of LoneLady, a dance performance by Project O, and a snake-like artwork from Minimaforms. The soundtrack is performed by world-renowned drummer Valentina Magaletti. The innovative nature of the film is designed to reflect the bold and experimental approach of Somerset House Studios themselves. It's certainly striking, and doesn't pull any punches.

 

Camp + King – Energizer

The Energizer Bunny is back on our screens this week courtesy of Camp + King, who have given the iconic pink rabbit a new look. The agency worked with Mill+ and Director Robert Sethi to put a modern spin on the brand in a series of CG spots for Energizer’s latest campaign, allowing the now 27 year old fluffy icon to fully embrace his one-of-a-kind personality new animation and character design. The concept was to revisit the design of the Energizer Bunny to match the progression of the brand, kicking up the animation while retaining elements of his foundation as an animatronic puppet and, most importantly, bringing more of the character’s personality to life than ever before. Mill+ set out to strike a balance between a realistic and stylised look, a process that would heighten the Energizer Bunny’s physical appearance and performance range. The VFX & Design team conducted a variety of animation tests to establish the way in which he’d move about the scene, built a brand new set of plush CG fur, and lit the character model to maintain his realism once composited into the CG environments. His range of motion was also extended to give him more room to express himself. Whilst I'm usually not too keen on CGI reboots, I do have to admit the new bunny looks a lot more cuddly. I still prefer the Duracel Bunny mind!

 

Ogilvy India – KFC

Ogilvy Delhi has created a digital campaign called “You eat, they eat” for KFC’s add HOPE initiative, which involved KFC contributing a percentage of the sale of every bucket to the end child hunger. The agency saw an opportunity to use the KFC bucket to raise awareness for the plight of millions of children, suffering from hunger. These short, animated films provide a glimpse into the lives of three less fortunate kids, Pinky, Raju and Gopal, who spend hours searching for food, every day. Beautiful, simple animation and a beautiful, simple idea. The same idea has been extended to various social media platforms. Ogilvy Delhi also worked with Neo@Ogilvy on a packaging innovation, where image recognition technology was used to deliver content directly to phones.

 

Saatchi & Saatchi Stockholm – Verum

The Swedish healthy yoghurt brand, Verum, has released the first film in their latest advertising campaign from Saatchi & Saatchi Stockholm, which sets out to demonstrate the simplicity of feeling good. The TVC, which launched this week, is designed to capture the so-called “Joygurt” feeling that comes with enjoying their healthy yoghurts through the eyes of a skateboard loving pooch called “Biuf.” The campaign film, which marks a move towards a more emotional communication strategy for the brand, was produced by Folke Film and directed by Marcus Söderlund. The visuals of Biuf and his skater journey were authentically created without CGI or special effects and it really shows, because no matter how far technology has advanced, there's still no replacement for putting a real dog on a real skateboard.

 

AMV BBDO – WHISKAS

WHISKAS has launched an aptly adorable new brand platform and advertising campaign which celebrates what owners love most about their cats; their inquisitive, curious personalities. The “Feed Their Curiosity” campaign from AMV BBDO launches with three new ads that showcase the enchanting way our cats approach the world and highlights WHISKAS’ role in feeding this curiosity. Centred around a silver tabby cat, each of the ads captures the mesmerising way the cat approaches everyday situations; a drop of water falling from a bathroom tap; a light switch transforming darkness into light; a forgotten hairbrush teasing with its spines. In each ad, we hear the cat’s thoughts, giving the viewer an insight into the curious way he approaches the world. Each time, he is distracted by the sound of a WHISKAS pouch being opened in the kitchen, and he runs through the house and dives eagerly into the delicious food. The new campaign will be running across the UK on TV and online leading up to Christmas and the campaign will continue in 2017. This will be supported with activation across WHISKAS’ social channels.

 

Grey London – Bose

Bose is launching a new campaign called “Get Closer,” with two new spots breaking across the world for its QuietComfort 35 wireless headphones and SoundTouch wireless speakers, as well as a third US-only ad to mark its continuing NFL sponsorship. “Get Closer” embodies Bose’s culture of innovation and creativity, and plays on the luxury appeal of the brand's products, whilst also seemingly attempting to market the products to a more urban crowd, perhaps taking on Beats and Apple at their own game. The inspiration for the campaign comes from “A desire to connect Bose innovations to the emotions the products can evoke.” Grey London devised the global campaign as well as a global spot for Bose’s QuietComfort 35 headphones, encompassing TV, VOD, OOH, digital and social. The film opens on a bird’s eye view of London with a surprising difference; the city is completely empty. Bereft of people, cars and noise. The silent streets are enchanted with one figure alone: dancer and performer Maëva Berthelot. It's all very “28 Days Later,” only with a decent beat and a snappy twist in the tail. Definitely a winner this one, and it really manages to give an old brand a new spin in a deftly organic way.

 

FCB Inferno – npower

Across Britain, millions of people, in millions of homes, possess what npower are calling “Family Super Powers” in a new campaign from FCB Inferno that celebrates everyday talents, and links these unsung super powers to the energy provider’s own super powers; a new range of innovative products and services. The campaign uses real people, not actors, with a nationwide search undertaken to unearth these quirky talents. These range from Kenny who can match dates to days, to Milo the family dog who can balance just about anything on his nose. “Super Powers” will run into the start of 2017, and is brought to life across multiple platforms including VOD, Press, OOH, and radio, with experiential, social and editorial also being activated. The film was directed by Finn McGough of Knucklehead Films, known for his fly-on-the-wall documentaries. Dave Lamb of “Come Dine With Me” fame provides the VO, injecting his distinctive commentary and brand of observational humour. A roadshow, organised by Avantgarde, will also travel across the country as part of the campaign. Consumers can showcase their super powers for the opportunity to win prizes and share their own 'super powers' live. This activation is being promoted by a spot featuring Peter Andre and his dog, which is just as cheesy and wonderful as you'd expect!

 

MullenLowe London – Calor

Calor Gas, the UK’s leading supplier of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), have launched their new integrated “Clever Choice” campaign, championing Calor as the better alternative to oil for the two million people in the UK living off the grid. The campaign from MullenLowe London is headlined by two films, shot by Matt Huntley from Burger, which playfully dramatises the quirks of rural life, and positions Calor as the best way to heat your off-grid home. Set in the English countryside and narrated by the one and only Tom Baker, the films introduce “Clever Dick,” a know-it-all character who irritates fellow villagers with his marrow growing prowess and general smugness. That is until they discover he’s not using Calor to heat his home. As the target market here is pretty specific, Calor will be using Sky’s ADSmart tool to precisely target the TV to specific off grid postcodes to ensure that the majority of rural oil fuel users see the commercials.

 

DDB New York – Wildlife Conservation Film Festival

I love stop-frame animation, so just had to include this gorgeous film by DDB New York this week. Entitled simply “Dream,” the film has been created to generate buzz and attract attention to the Wildlife Conservation Film Festival’s upcoming flagship event, and captures the plight of four distinct animals suffering at the hands of humans. Set to a newly recorded version of the classic Les Miserables song “I Dreamed a Dream,” the emotional portrayal begins with animals in their natural habitats singing when their life was good. As the song shifts in tone, the animals continue to sing as their lives are threatened by man-made threats to their lives and environment. DDB worked with the animation production company Zombie Studio and music and sound partner Mophonics to bring the song to life. The video features the guest vocalists: Natalie Bergman, Ryan Merchant, Keenan O’Meara and Tal Altman, who all do a great job, but I think they really should have cast “Seal” as the seal. Just because. The pro-bono video for the organisation will run online, on WCFF social platforms and at WCFF events before, during, and after the October festival, as well as through PR.

 

72andSunny Amsterdam – Smirnoff

Smirnoff continues to shine a light on those who are more inclusive than the world that surrounds them in their latest chapter of the “We’re Open” campaign from 72andSunny Amsterdam, which features Swedish-Iranian, hip-hop artist Nadia Tehran taking her stand for openness. In a stunning reminder to us all that staying open minded is key if we are to continue to meet interesting people and have enriching diverse experiences, the latest iteration of the campaign kicked off in the UK and Ireland this week and will later launch in global markets such as Africa and Latin America, as Smirnoff continues to champion its message of inclusion across the globe. In this film, we meet Tehran; the uncompromising artist, whose music ignores borders and boundaries. Having grown up in a migrant community within a traditional part of Sweden, Nadia’s multicultural background is as impactful as the sound she creates, ignoring differences and bringing people together. Taking a cinematic approach, the film shows Nadia performing on stage and hanging out with her friends, striking an interesting balance between both her Swedish life and Iranian heritage. The campaign’s next chapter, featuring French-African DJ Jeffrey Jewell, will come out later in the year. I can't wait to see it!

 

Honourable Mention: Mr President – Freesat

Production company Knucklehead and the Mr. President agency have created the latest campaign for Freesat; the UK's subscription-free satellite TV service. This highlights their TV services and companion mobile app, which consumers can access without a subscription. This is the first work the agency has created for the satellite TV provider, since the agency was appointed in the summer this year following a 3 way pitch. The creative theme of the campaign is “Unbelievably Good,” which is based on the high level of advocacy and satisfaction uncovered from existing Freesat customers. The TVCs dramatise the disbelief people experience when they first switch to Freesat and discover the rich content offering, smart features and user experience, all subscription free. The brief and strategy behind the cross-media campaign aims to reach pay TV subscribers who are considering switching from their current provider and looking for an alternative which delivers a quality service and saves money. The campaign will run from October to take advantage of the peak selling period for consumer electronics, and is a cheeky, likeable piece of work that really makes its point in an amusing and convincing way.

Top Image by Loreta Isac​

Benjamin Hiorns is a freelance writer and struggling musician from Kidderminster in the UK.

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