Newcastle Enlists Celebs for Independence Eve Effort

Three celebrities — Elizabeth Hurley, Stephen Merchant and Zachary Quinto — are the stars of the latest campaign from Newcastle Brown Ale, which satirically imagines how great America could have been if England had won the Revolutionary War.

The effort, called "If We Won," is the follow-up to the beer maker’s "If We Made It" Super Bowl program starring Anna Kendrick and Keyshawn Johnson.

Instead of celebrating Independence Day, British beer Newcastle is launching a tongue-in-cheek celebration of “Independence Eve.”

The content series, created by Droga5, features several film shorts starring British actors Hurley and Merchant, and Quinto, an American actor whose roles include "Heroes," "Star Trek" and "American Horror Story."

The promotion is in reaction to the typical marketing that most American beer companies roll out every Independence Day -- including cans festooned with stars and stripes -- which exploits the nation’s strong sense of patriotism.

To get in on the holiday action, and to poke fun at rampant patriotic displays by American brewers, Newcastle Brown Ale has created Independence Eve, an American “holiday” designed specifically to sell British beer. On July 3, Newcastle is encouraging Americans to grab a Newcastle Brown Ale and toast to “the country that nearly ran this one.”

Newcastle will celebrate Independence Eve by exploring how great America could have been if Great Britain had won the Revolutionary War. The program features 16 pieces of filmed content to help Newcastle celebrate the land that nearly became “Great Britain 2.”

The program includes several “alternate history” videos imagining how different America might have been if the Brits had won, including Revolutionary War re-re-enactments.

Each video will be made available at www.IfWeWon.com between now and the Independence Eve “holiday.” Fans can follow @Newcastle on Twitter and “like” Newcastle’s Facebook page.

“It’s not easy to sell a British beer during a supremely American holiday, so we’re imagining how great America could have been -- and how much beer we could have sold -- if the Brits had won the Revolutionary War,” said Quinn Kilbury, brand director for Newcastle Brown Ale, in a release. “In the late 1700s, colonial Americans risked life and limb to fight for their freedom. Today, we’re running the very real risk of people totally not getting the joke here, and we think that’s pretty patriotic.”

Newcastle Brown Ale is imported by Heineken USA, headquartered in White Plains, New York.

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