• MindShare Bails On J&J Review
    MindShare has bailed from Johnson & Johnson's global media review of its $3 billion account -- apparently because it just can't handle all the work. "We are at capacity" in many offices, says an agency spokesperson. "If we were to win, we were fearful that we would not be able to staff up and take other steps necessary as quickly as we would need to [in order to] service the account properly." The agency already handles overseas planning for Pfizer Consumer Healthcare, gobbled up by J&J last year. Other still in the running include Universal McCann, Initiative and ...
  • Bloomberg Questions Anti-Gun Ad Pull
    New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg is questioning a move by some Kansas TV stations to refuse to air ads that are part of his anti-gun campaign. "I think if I were CBS, I'd call this local station and say what on earth were you thinking about? You can't censor this kind of ad, if you don't agree with the opinion," Bloomberg says. The ad in question features a Minnesota police chief who claims federal laws keep him from getting information about where guns in his community are coming from and who is buying them. But CBS affiliate ...
  • Nokia To Divide Account Pitches
    Nokia will divide the pitches for its $300 million ad account into creative and creative strategy and network distribution, with shops in contention for each. JWT, Wieden + Kennedy and Mother are pitching the creative account, with the first also in the network distribution portion along with Grey Worldwide, Bates and DDB Worldwide. A decision is expected by the middle of 2007, and while Nokia has no comment, when it first began the review, it said it wants to be "the most loved and admired, iconic brand by people around the world." Nokia, the world's leading cellphone ...
  • New Branding Effort For Citigroup
    Citigroup is pitching a new message in a global branding campaign -- its first since being formed 10 years ago. Tagged "Let's Get It Done," the new effort is expected to roll next week with TV, online and print, and will cost about $30 million over the first few months. The total Citigroup account is worth more than $600 million. This part is being led by the Seattle office of Publicis, which is also set to take over the bank's consumer advertising account from Fallon in Minneapolis. Unlike past ads, which rely on humor, the new ...
  • Weather Channel Going All HD
    The Weather Channel plans to spend about $50 million to develop and roll out an HD version of the network. The effort will include a new studio at its headquarters outfitted with HD cameras and other equipment, as well the conversions of tens of thousands of on-screen graphics. "We're making major infrastructure investments," says network president Debora Wilson. "We consider this a cost of doing business." The channel hopes to have all programming in HD by the middle of next year, when the standard feed will be a converted version of the HD one. It will break ground on ...
  • Silverman To Host MTV Movie Awards
    Sarah Silverman will host this year's MTV Movie Awards, set to air live on June 3 from Los Angeles. The actress comedian jokes the gig is the culmination of a lifelong dream: "Ever since I was a little girl, before it even started in 1980 -- MTV -- I said, 'Someday, I want there to be an all-music channel that gives out awards for movies. And I want to host that show." Silverman, with her own eponymous Comedy Central series, has also starred in a film of her one-woman show: "Sarah Silverman: Jesus Is Magic." But despite her ...
  • IOC Signs Shops For Global Effort
    The International Olympic Committee has signed WPP's Voluntary United Group of Creative Agencies for its global-marketing effort. The group won a review featuring Havas Sport and two Publicis units, Leo Burnett and incumbent Saatchi & Saatchi. United will craft TV, online and viral ads, along with "experiential" marketing and PR. Key to the campaign, ready to roll in the fourth quarter, are the values of "excellence, friendship and respect to a youth audience," while "Celebrate humanity" is the basic theme. "Engaging the youth audience in both the Olympic Games and values is essential to ensuring the future of ...
  • Does FCC Violence Report Mean Cable A La Carte?
    The FCC's newest report on TV violence is apt to become one more weapon for those pushing cable systems to offer channels al a carte, but the trade mag says it won't work. That's due to the subscribers -- not the cable operators. People can't decide what to have for lunch, never mind sifting through a menu of cable networks and selections without changing their minds. Even if cable operators have the ability to easily enable -- or disable - access to individual networks, will customer-service people have the time and ability to handle multiple requests from the ...
  • "Drive" Ends In The Ditch
    Fox action drama "Drive" has ended up in the ditch after only four episodes. The network has dropped the show, about an underground car race that got a big promotional push on "American Idol," from its programming line-up, since it failed to draw any meaningful number of eyeballs. "Drive" averaged less than 6 million viewers and a 2.3/6 rating among adults 18-49. Fox wanted to get the show, produced by Tim Minear and Ben Queen, onto its fall schedule but no dice. For the moment at least, its Monday night slot will be filled by reruns of the ...
  • Fox's Gibson: Rosie's 9/11 Theories Too Much For ABC
    A Fox News personality has apparently figured out the real reason for the departure of Rosie O'Donnell from ABC's "The View." While Rosie claims it was a contract dispute, according to John Gibson, she was "pushed out by ABC" -- and not because she liked to grab her crotch and/or upset Barbara Walters or insult Donald Trump. The Alphabet Network bid her adieu, Gibson writes, because of "her insistence on pushing 9/11 conspiracy nutter theories on national network television, a deeply embarrassing thing for any self-respecting network." Her presence made it look as though ABC couldn't ...
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