Gromit to appear in campaign to promote Bristol

Gromit, the canine half of the animated 'Wallace and Gromit' duo, is starring in another tourism campaign, this time in digital activity for Visit Bristol by Renegade Media and Icon Films.

A five-foot sculpture of Gromit will appear in a series of short films that launch today with a teaser film.

A two-minute feature will follow in the third week of June, starring the Gromit sculpture making its way around iconic Bristol sites, including Clifton Village, Millennium Square, the SS Great Britain and some of graffiti artist Banksy’s works.

The "surreal" scenes are a "cheeky salute to the slapstick of Eric Sykes and Harold Lloyd", according to writer and director Cris Warren of Icon Films.

Meanwhile, at least three 20- to 30-second short comic sketches will also be unveiled throughout June as part of the £200,000 campaign, hosted on the Visit Bristol Facebook page and amplified through Twitter.

Mark Terry-Lush, the chief executive of Renegade Media, said the agency jointly pitched with Icon Films to Destination Bristol in February, and was appointed shortly afterwards.

He said: "Working with Icon Films was a dream and hopefully we have created something a lot of people will enjoy.

"The film uses gentle humour to tell a story about Bristol. The wider campaign around the core films will include extra content like outtakes from filming, CCTV footage, screen grabs, and Instagram images, all seeded across various platforms helping to create a buzz about Bristol across all media and social channels."

After the digital campaign, a new public art trail will open on 1 July, including 80 Gromit sculptures designed by celebrities including illustrator Raymond Briggs, comedian Harry Hill and designer Sir Paul Smith.

The 'Wallace and Gromit' series was produced by Aardman Animations, which is based in Bristol.

Visit England used 'Wallace and Gromit' to promote holidays at home in a recent campaign, while the National Trust used the characters last year in a Jubilee-themed campaign.