Nigel Lawson, the ex-Chancellor of the Exchequer, is the surprise
star of a pounds 2 million campaign for the financial services company,
M&G, through Rainey Kelly Campbell Roalfe.
Two commercials, directed by Paul Arden through Arden Sutherland-Dodd,
go on air this week and take a dry, humorous look at M&G personal equity
Lawson apparently agreed to take part in the ads - his first -
immediately after reading the scripts.
The ads were both filmed in a stylish fashion in an enormous room, shot
through by a bright beam of sunlight. The first execution opens with
Lawson sitting at a table, as a voiceover explains that anyone who
invested in an M&G personal equity plan five years ago would have
doubled their money by now.
Lawson, who published a diet book last year explaining how he shed
several stones in weight since leaving the public spotlight, is seen
watching television pictures of himself holding up the famous battered
budget box as he sets off to deliver the 1986 Budget - the year he
introduced PEPs. While watching the images of his former fat self,
Lawson remarks wryly: ’I must have been in a generous mood.’
In the second spot, Lawson is strolling through the room, declaring:
’There aren’t many certainties in life - who’d have predicted the new
slimline me?’ Then, as the camera pans slowly along a bookshelf, he goes
on to say that one of life’s certainties is that you don’t have to pay
tax on your investments.
Lawson is then seen pulling a book off the shelf, which is revealed to
be his own diet book, and then, with a straight face, he delivers the
line: ’If you want to lose pounds, try this thin volume. If you want to
gain some, try a PEP.’
The ads were art directed by Gary Monaghan and written by Derek Payne.
Media planning and buying is through John Ayling and Associates.
James Murphy, the account director on M&G at Rainey Kelly, said: ’A lot
of money gets spent on lavish productions, but these ads are simple, dry
and stylised - and they get straight to the point.’