McCann pioneers new animation in Boots ad

Boots Healthcare International will make the first use of several

new animation techniques in the latest global campaign for Strepsils,

breaking next week.

The 30-second ad was created by McCann-Erickson in association with The

Animation Partnership, which developed several techniques to achieve the


The ad attempts to break away from the conventional treatment of medical

products using diagrams of the human body. Instead a wholly symbolic

scenario is introduced to communicate the pain of a sore throat, with

animated landscapes representing both the symptoms and the cure.

The spot opens on a harsh landscape of spikes, barbed wire and


A voiceover describes the soothing effects of taking Strepsils as the

sun rises, melting the metal into dewy, lush countryside. The ad ends

with: "Strepsils: first aid for sore throats" as the sun transforms into

Strepsils' circular red brand device.

In its use of painful images to trigger memories of sore throat

symptoms, the ad recalls the famous work produced by BMP DDB Needham for

Strepsils. Ads in the early and mid-90s transformed sticks of celery

into tree trunks and added vicious- looking spikes to apples.

McCann-Erickson picked up the £19 million Strepsils business from

BMP in 1997, when Boots Healthcare International consolidated its global

business into Interpublic.

The ad was developed at McCann-Erickson's London office. It was written

by Mike Lawrence and art directed by Andy McAdie. The director was David

Parvin. Media is through MindShare.

"It's always exciting when a client wants to break the mould,"

McCann-Erickson's deputy chief executive, Chris Hunton, said. "The

Strepsils brief not only pushed the category forward, but also allowed

us to experiment with new techniques that bring the sore throat syndrome

to life in a completely unexpected way."

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