Out to Launch

Paris Hilton is too hot for TV (and the Internet, too). More ads taking advantage of "Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith." Wendy's wants consumers to "do what tastes right." Let's launch!

Paris Hilton's ad for Carl's Jr.'s Spicy BBQ Six Dollar Burger is so hot that not only have watchdog groups labeled it soft-core porn but the ad crashed, a site featuring a 60-second version of the ad. The 30-second spot launched May 19 on the West Coast and shows Hilton eating The Spicy BBQ Six Dollar Burger while washing a Bentley in what's been labeled a "bathing suit." Throw in some not-so subliminal images (hello gushing hose) and the final product will still leave viewers asking, "What burger company was that for?" Mendelsohn|Zien, Los Angeles created the ad.



My New York Mets are back at .500 again, but at least their outdoor campaigns are above average. Last Wednesday, Ogilvy's creative team placed decals on car windows in Queens and Manhattan that looked as if a baseball had crashed through the window. Each broken window sticker had a note attached from a NY Met apologizing for the broken windshield. One note reads: "I guess you noticed the broken windshield. My bad. I'm used to the Green Monster holding in my homeruns. Come out to Shea and I'll try and hit another one out for you." #16 Doug Mientkiewicz. There are eight letters in all from eight different players, each written in the style that the players speak. To create the broken windshield effect, the creative team bought a windshield and threw a ball at it to get the spider web-like break. The windshield was photographed and decals were placed on 150 cars.

Tourism New Zealand (TNZ) wants your "seal" of approval in a clever outdoor campaign hitting the West Coast. Tourism New Zealand's 100% Pure New Zealand campaign has been running for more than five years. The "Sealed for Freshness" billboards are an extension of this campaign and bolster its relevance by physically demonstrating New Zealand's purity. By using a large Ziploc bag and heat-sealed packaging covering two billboards in the Los Angeles area, TNZ literally sealed in the purity and beauty of the "Lake Diamond" and "Glenorchy Bikers" images. Featuring a date on each execution, the billboards are protected from smog and air pollution. M&C Saatchi Los Angeles created the campaign.

Wendy's is launching a national advertising campaign today encouraging customers to "Do What Tastes Right." It features a variety of ads (11 in all), matched to targeted audiences. Included are ads that promote specific menu items as well as ads supporting the brand. The campaign debuts tonight during the season finales of "American Idol," "Lost," and "Alias." The campaign begins with two brand-focused spots that will run for several weeks. They will be followed by commercials promoting hamburgers, Spicy Chicken, Combo Choices, and late night hours. TV, print, and Internet ads will be used on a national basis, along with TV, radio, and outdoor for local markets. "Hole" shows just how hot Wendy's Spicy Chicken sandwich is, as it burns through a desk, a grand piano, the parking garage below, then through a subway car, past a couple of coal miners, finally reaching the devil, who burns his fingers trying to grab the sandwich. McCann-Erickson created the campaign.

MoveOn PAC has launched its own "Star Wars"-themed campaign entitled "Save the Republic." The 30-second spot begins with a screen filled with stars. A voice over says, "For 200 years, the senators and the fair judges were keepers of peace and justice in the republic until... one senator, seduced by a dark vision of absolute power, seeks to destroy this fabled order, replacing fair judges with far right clones." A hooded figure steps out from the shadows and it's Senator Frist. A close up on his face, shows him bathed in red light, laughing. Copy concludes with "Stop Senator Frist. Save our courts. Save the Republic."

Saatchi & Saatchi New York has taken a light-hearted approach to its campaign for Olympic Paint. The campaign touts a new line of paints that doesn't smell and shows women with paint on their faces. Really. Rather than use a picture of a newly-painted room, the spots show an opened paint can along with a model with paint on her nose or cheeks. The campaign debuts in June issues of O, The Oprah Magazine, Redbook and Better Homes and Gardens Special Editions.

Verizon Communications launched a nationwide TV campaign May 16 featuring longtime spokesman James Earl Jones (another "Star Wars" connection). The effort promotes the fact that Verizon DSL has doubled its download speeds without raising its monthly rate. Two James Earl Joneses face off, one championing speed and the other talking about price. In the end, a third Jones defeats them both by delivering a free wireless gateway, allowing all the Joneses to have the speed and the price they want. The target audience is dial-up users who are frustrated with slow Internet connections. Creative is breaking in nine key markets, including Boston, Seattle, Tampa, Pittsburgh, Baltimore, New York, Dallas, Philadelphia, and Washington D.C. Draft New York created the campaign. Media is being handled by ID Media and Zenith.

Royal Philips Electronics launched the second wave of its brand campaign based on the concept of 'Sense and Simplicity.' The ads are designed to give customers a distinctive image of a sharper, more focused endeavor. A $100 million endeavor. That's how much the company will spend on advertising between April and June across 11 markets around the world. The campaign launched May 16 in the U.S. and will run through the end of June. It consists of network and cable television advertising, magazine and newspaper print ads, online ads, as well as airport advertising in selected cities. DDB created the campaign.

Old Navy's latest spots are speaking to my inner child of the '80s. The first spot turned Young MC's one hit "Bust a Move" into Bust a Tunic. The next ad made The Go-Go's song "Our Lips Are Sealed" into "Old Navy Swimwear, and before I can say Belinda Carlisle, I see ads turning Rick James' "Superfreak" into Super Skirts. I can't keep up. Back to the "Swimwear" campaign. This ad is airing on cable stations including Animal Planet, BET, Comedy Central, Discovery, E!, FX, Lifetime, MTV, MTV2, Nick At Nite, Nickelodeon, TBS, TLC, TNT, USA, VH1, and Women's Entertainment. Deutsch Los Angeles created the campaign.

In Web site launches this week:

I'm not sure what this site has to do with Burger King, (aside from the BK link at the bottom of the page) but I enjoyed challenging Darth Vader. Crispin Porter + Bogusky created, a viral campaign where users can play twenty questions with the evil Darth Vader. A series of yes and no questions are asked, along with some heavy breathing from you know who, until Darth Vader figures out what you were thinking about (a vegetable, mineral, etc.). Darth threw some insults my way too, but at least he didn't tell me that there are Elephants in Denmark.

AKQA garnered a great deal of attention last week when the agency revealed that it created the interface for the Xbox 360. AKQA was awarded the assignment in October 2003 following a global pitch process among eight competing agencies. AKQA's work included major inputs into the evolution of the Xbox 360 brand, font, industrial design, audio, and console boot animation. In addition, AKQA also launched the official Xbox 360 site that will continue to evolve and reflect the Xbox 360 experience by encouraging multiplayer use.

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