Williams, famed for Publicis Clio work, loses cancer battle

Mel Williams, the Publicis deputy creative director and the mainstay of the long-running ’Nicole and Papa’ Renault Clio campaign, has died from a brain tumour aged 48.

Mel Williams, the Publicis deputy creative director and the

mainstay of the long-running ’Nicole and Papa’ Renault Clio campaign,

has died from a brain tumour aged 48.



His death last Friday at a hospice in London’s St John’s Wood saddened

the agency where Williams, an art director, had worked for more than 24

years and once ran the creative department in a caretaker role when

Publicis was between creative directors.



His last major work for Renault - a TV campaign introducing the Megane

Scenic - is on air at the moment.



Williams will also be remembered for his work on Harp lager under the

theme, ’Time for a sharp exit.’



Tim Mack, Renault’s UK communications director, said of him: ’No-one

could have looked after us better.’



Gerry Moira, the Publicis creative director, said: ’It’s impossible to

overstate the contribution Mel has made to the agency and impossible for

us to imagine a creative department without his indomitable

presence.’



He added: ’Mel has been a vital part of this agency since the very

beginning and no individual has given more. Not just professionally -

with Renault campaigns that remain the benchmark for all car advertising

- but also personally.’



Williams, married with three teenage children, art directed all the

’Nicole and Papa’ commercials since the Clio’s UK launch in 1991.



Michael Conroy, the Publicis group chairman, said: ’Mel was very much

the custodian of the core values of Renault in the UK. He had real

feet-on-the-ground judgment as well as being an agency stalwart whose

considerable talent was matched by great integrity.’



The funeral will take place this Thursday at the Breakspear Crematorium,

Breakspear Road, Ruislip, at 3.15pm. Friends are welcome to attend. His

family has requested no flowers but donations to be sent to the National

Hospital for Neurology and St John’s Hospice.



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