TBWA uses Banzai format for Sun

The Sun has used the stars and format of the cult Channel 4 gameshow Banzai for its World Cup-themed television and radio campaign through TBWA/London.

A series of four 30-second TV ads, under the strapline "Sun in Japan World Cup Banzai", will use the voices of the show's Bert Kwouk and Eij Kusuhara, and test fans with various football-themed bets. Losers will be curtly instructed to brush up with The Sun's World Cup coverage.

The TV ads will run from 13 May until the opening of the World Cup on 1 June. Tactical radio executions along the same theme will then continue the push until the end of the competition.

"This World Cup will have a unique feeling about it due to the location and the kick-off times of the matches,

Nick Canning, News Group Newspapers' marketing director, said. "Our campaign is designed to combine the passion of The Sun as number one for football coverage with typical Sun humour. The Banzai proposition is the perfect vehicle and TBWA has delivered some great scripts."

Two executions feature the England defender Rio Ferdinand, whom The Sun has signed as a columnist for the duration of the competition. In one, a Page Three girl lies in a hotel pod and reads the column while viewers guess how many referees can squeeze in with her. In the other ad, viewers must predict how many of the contents of a Sun supporter's pack promotion Ferdinand can memorise.

Viewers are also asked to identify the angriest Swede from three fans shown a photograph of Sven Goran Eriksson, dubbed "Sven traitor", and the biggest England fan from three supporters asked to prove their devotion through eating Wasabi sushi.

The ads were written and art directed by Andy Booth and Jim Seath, and were directed by Ashley King and produced by Thomas Thomas. Media planning and buying is by Carat.