• Volvo Cuts 2 Shops In Review
    Volvo has invited Havas' Arnold and Publicis Groupe's Fallon to take another shot at its $150 million account, while cutting incumbent Euro RSCG and 180 from a review. Final presentations and the decision are set for the week of April 16. Havas' Euro RSCG has been Volvo's principal agency and will hang on to some business in the Asia-Pacific and Latin-American regions. "All four agencies were very strong," says Volvo global ad director Tim Ellis, adding that the creative and strategic presentations of Arnold and Fallon were just a cut above the others. Volvo had previously ...
  • Boy Butter Ads Banned In SF, OK, NY, LA
    The makers of Boy Butter, a line of personal lubricants aimed at the gay market, chose three cities with highly tolerant populations to air their first TV spot. But after getting the OK in New and Los Angeles, a cable operator in San Francisco -- probably the most gay-friendly city in the U.S. -- rejected the ad. "The agents from Comcast in San Francisco declined to air our "You Won't Believe It's Not Boy Butter" spot because it was deemed to controversial," says Eyal Feldman, creator of the product. The 30-second ad spoofs a campaign from the early ...
  • Trump, NBC Sign Pageant Deals
    TV personality and real-estate developer Donald Trump will be in the beauty-contest business for at least three more years under a renewed contract with NBC for broadcasts of the Miss Universe and Miss USA pageants. However, a third pageant he co-owns -- Miss Teen USA -- will be dumped after this summer. Friday's broadcast of the last Miss USA contest ended a year where scandal seemed to revive some interest in pageants. The outgoing title holder -- Tara Conner -- nearly lost her crown in January for an underage booze binge, while another contestant was canned after racy ...
  • "Runaway Bride" Spoofed In Cop Ad
    Jennifer Wilbanks, the so-called "Runaway Bride," has inspired a police-recruitment ad in New Mexico. The ad, which features a cop grabbing a woman dressed in a wedding gown and running shoes, stars Trish Hoffman, an Albuquerque police officer who hit the news when she led Wilbanks through the Albuquerque airport. "Running away from your current job? Call APD recruiting," the ad reads. Wilbanks claimed she had been abducted and sexually assaulted on the eve of her wedding in 2005. But she later admitted to making it all up and pleaded no contest to lying to police, getting two ...
  • Turner To Eye Travel Channel
    Time Warner's Turner Broadcasting System could be interested in buying the Travel Channel from Cox Communications if the cable operator decides to sell it -- after it is done shedding its stake in Discovery Networks. Turner, which currently owns TNT, TBS, Cartoon Network and Court TV, would "take a look" at Travel, says Mark Lazarus, president of Turner Entertainment Group. But much depends on terms of programming and other contracts between Travel and business partners. It would only be "natural," he says, to review Travel if it were to become available. Cox is acquiring Travel as part of ...
  • Kids Consumed By Food Ads
    Food is the most heavily TV product to kids and teens, according to a new study -- the largest ever connected of TV food marketing - by the Kaiser Family Foundation. "Food is the No. 1 product advertised to kids, followed by media such as music, video games and movies," says Vicky Rideout, vice president of the foundation's Program for the Study of Entertainment Media and Health and director of the study. And they aren't being told to eat their vegetables, either. More than one-third of ads aimed at kids and adolescents are for candy and snacks, those high-fat, ...
  • WPP Chief Settles Libel Suit
    The head of WPP Group has taken $236,000 -- roughly one-tenth of his legal costs -- to settle a libel lawsuit against two former colleagues. Martin Sorrell says no regrets about suing Marco Benatti and Marco Tinelli, founders of Italian ad firm Fullsix SpA. He accused them of running an online hate campaign against him, along with spreading a picture of him and WPP executive Daniela Weber, with the pair referred to as "the mad dwarf and the nympho schizo." Benatti and Tinelli do not accept liability as part of the settlement and the amount Sorrell accepted was the ...
  • Paas Dyes Break First TV Spots
    Paas, which has been selling Easter egg dye for more than a century, is using TV ads for the first time this year with a $1 million media buy it hopes will get more people to color eggs. "Paas has become synonymous with Easter, and we've seen good growth year upon year, but we thought if we reminded consumers about their childhood traditions on TV, we could reach an even broader audience and potentially see even better growth rates," says Evan Eckman, senior vice president-marketing and sales for Pass parent Signature Brands. Paas has a majority share ...
  • FCC To Report On TV Violence Regs
    An upcoming report form the Federal Communications Commission that recommends ways Congress can regulate TV violence has divided the agency's five members. But it got one pandering politician ready to expand its reach to cable, satellite and pay TV. Republican Chairman Kevin Martin and Democratic Commissioner Michael Copps, often at odds with each other, are pushing for a crackdown on graphic scenes and have approved the latest version of the report, insiders say. Meanwhile, GOP Commissioner Robert McDowell and Democratic Commissioner Jonathan Adelstein are apprehensive about intervention, while Deborah Taylor Tate, a Republican, is expected to approve the ...
  • New Surfing Show For Fuel TV
    Fuel TV is looking to a July 7 premiere for a new show called "The 808." It features a group of aggressive surfers known as the "Wolfpak," who hang on the North Shore of Oahu in Hawaii. The action-sports channel, owned by Fox Cable Networks, has slated a seven-episode original series around the group, who trained in martial arts and act as self-appointed guards that give outsiders access to the North Shore. "What Wall Street is to the financial world and Hollywood is to the entertainment world, the North Shore is to the surfing world," says Shon Tomlin, ...
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