Harry Enfield, one of the most outspoken critics of the ad industry
in its dispute with the actors’ union, Equity, is to front national TV
advertising to launch an adult version of Hula Hoops.
Publicis has signed the comedian and writer to a long-term contract
which is unaffected by the boycott of TV commercials production by
Equity, an action which Enfield supports.
The contract means Enfield and his comedy partner, Paul Whitehouse, can
feature in new advertising breaking this Friday. It will set the scene
for April’s launch of KP Foods’ new snack product, Big O’s, which will
compete against Procter & Gamble’s Pringles and PepsiCo Foods’
’Although Hula Hoops appeal to everybody, they’re seen as a bit childish
for adults,’ Stephen Meade, the Publicis managing partner, said. ’Big
O’s are man-size Hula Hoops with adult flavours in dark packaging.’
In the pounds 2 million pre-launch campaign, Enfield and Whitehouse
recreate their television roles as the thuggish Self Righteous
In the ads, they are transported back in time where they meet Queen
Elizabeth I and the Spanish Inquisition’s enforcer, Torquemada, who
tries to torture them into confessing that Hula Hoops are flat.
The films were written and art directed by Andy Wakefield and directed
by Sid Roberson. Media buying is through Leo Burnett.
Meade said: ’When we launched the Enfield and Whitehouse advertising two
years ago, Hula Hoops was a brand in decline with no consistent
advertising. The campaign has worked brilliantly but, like all familiar
advertising, it has to be moved on.’
In the Big O’s launch commercial, which will be backed by a further
pounds 1 million, the brothers get caught up in a spoof film trailer
with high-speed chases, explosions and beautiful girls.
Gerry Moira, the Publicis executive creative director, commented: ’One
of the virtues of a strong campaign vehicle, such as the Self Righteous
Brothers, is the opportunity it affords for genuinely synergistic