Animated Mick Hucknall pushes Virgin Media on-demand service

LONDON - Virgin Media has released a cinema ad featuring animated versions of Simply Red singer Mick Hucknall and Sir Richard Branson, the first in a series of celebrity ads designed to promote its video-on-demand offering.

The tongue-in-cheek ad, created by Rainey Kelly Campbell Roalfe Y&R, is showing in Odeon and Cineworld Cinemas across the UK from Friday June 20.

It is set in KWACCS, a futuristic clinic in Switzerland. As Mick arrives at the clinic he is greeted by a burly female doctor who prescribes catch-up TV from Virgin Media in a bid to help him "Hold back zee years".

When Mick leaves the clinic, he is accompanied by an attractive blonde female night nurse to start his treatment, who turns out to be Branson in disguise.

Hucknall said of his animated character: "I think the ad looks great, it's just a bit of fun that I hope everyone will enjoy."

James Kydd, Virgin Media's managing director of brand and marketing, said: "Following on from the success of the Samuel L Jackson advertising, we are confident that these commercials will go down a storm."

The ad was written by Chris Hopkins and Pip Bishop at Rainey Kelly.

The next ad in the series, featuring a different celebrity, is slated to appear in September.

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