NEWS: O&M uses quirky tack in Guinness campaign

Guinness launched its long-awaited advertising campaign for 1996 this week, through Ogilvy and Mather, backed by a pounds 12 million media spend.

Guinness launched its long-awaited advertising campaign for 1996 this

week, through Ogilvy and Mather, backed by a pounds 12 million media

spend.



The campaign, shot entirely in black and white, seeks to tease the

viewer with puzzling scenarios that have no obvious meaning.



The ‘black and white’ theme replaces the ‘man with the Guinness’ work,

which starred Rutger Hauer and ran for seven years across 21

commercials.



Guinness is initially running two films - ‘old man’ and ‘bicycle’. The

commercials, which broke on ITV, Channel 4, satellite and at the cinema

on Monday night, will run for six weeks.



The theme of the campaign is summed up in the strapline: ‘Not everything

in black and white makes sense’ as revealed in Campaign last week. It

asks the viewer to think again about the situations presented in the ads

and about Guinness. The commercials each present a scenario, described

by a quotation, which turns out to be not quite as straightforward as it

first appears. None of the films features a pint of Guinness until the

final pack-shot.



The ads were written by the O&M copywriter, Jerry Gallaher, and his art

director, Clive Yaxley. The director was Tony Kaye through Tony Kaye

Films and post-production was by the Mill.



‘Old man’ features an elderly man in his house, talking to his canary

and looking fondly at pictures of his late wife. The quote reads: ‘I

hope I die before I get old - Pete Townshend.’ The old gentleman is next

seen standing at the altar marrying a busty blonde a quarter of his age.

He pats her on the stomach and it becomes clear that she is heavily

pregnant.



The second execution shows women living in a world without men.The

backing music to the ad is I’m Gonna Wash That Man Right Outta my Hair

taken from the film, South Pacific. In the commercial, women arm-wrestle

in the pub, work down a coal mine and collect refuse. The ad then shows

a completely empty maternity ward, and flashes up the quote: ‘A woman

needs a man like a fish needs a bicycle.’ Right at the end of the film,

we see a surreal shot of a fish riding a bicycle.



Live Issue, p12



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