AMV uses stunt theme to push BBC1 schedule

A stuntman who performs gravity-defying leaps across roofs high above gridlocked city streets in order to be home in time to watch his favourite TV programme is the star of a new 90-second commercial for BBC One.

The film, directed by Gorgeous' Tom Carty, is the first "spectacular"

from the corporation since the acclaimed "Perfect Day" and marks a major effort to get BBC1 reappraised by viewers.

None of the action in the execution, which includes a 23-foot leap

between rooftops 200 feet above the ground, was simulated.

Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO produced the commercial - its first since

winning the bulk of the BBC's £20 million spend in February - to

support BBC1's spring and summer schedules. The work breaks this

Friday.

The corporation said it wants to underline the progress made by BBC1

under its controller, Lorraine Heggessey, and the fact that it makes

unmissable programmes that are relevant to people's lives.

"This new campaign evokes the new spirit of BBC1," Christine Madden, the channel's head of marketing, said.

The commercial will not be used as an ident but will run directly into

the beginning of programmes for the new season. Programmes include a new series of Auf Wiedesehen Pet, which reunites most of the original cast after 15 years, and 40 hours of programmes celebrating the Queen's Golden Jubilee.

The stunts for the film were performed at various central London

locations - including the AMV offices in Marylebone Road - by the

athlete David Bell, who was discovered by the agency via the

internet.

The Frenchman, who lives on a housing estate on the outskirts of Paris,

developed the skill, which he calls Le Parcour - the Obstacle Course. He

describes it as a combination of sport and martial arts.

Tom Ewart, the copywriter who produced the commercial with his art

director, Dave Sullivan, said: "There are so many special effects in

commercials these days but this one is different. It's real and you feel

it."

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