Monday, October 31, 2005

Volkswagen Starts King Kong Campaign

Text from Volkwagen AG.
Touareg campaign begins with TV advert on 1st November

Filming on set in New Zealand


WOLFSBURG, Germany - New York 1933: a giant ape is rampaging through the streets and anything not nailed down is thrown through the air – a scene from the new film "King Kong" by Peter Jackson - and Volkswagen’s Touareg is at the centre of the action. A crew member is sitting in the vehicle and, of course, remains unharmed.

With this TV advert, Volkswagen is starting the third phase of its co-operation on the film "King Kong", which started with an exclusive online presentation of the first King Kong trailer and continued with the Touareg "Kong" stand at the International Auto Show in Frankfurt. The advert will be shown on all the important German TV channels for the next weeks as of 1st November, a "Making of…" is in production.

The organisation was very tight in Wellington, the capital city of New Zealand, where the advert was made. Peter Jackson’s right-hand assistant, film-director Carolynne Cunningham, made sure the pace was kept high. It was unique that the team interrupted their work in the middle of the post-production of "King Kong" in order to film this TV spot. The set had been created by Oscar winner Dan Hennah in only ten days, and the director of photography Andrew Lesnie, also an Oscar winner, had created the atmospheric light of a New York winter night together with his lighting team. The advert was filmed in ten hour shifts over two days. At Weta Digital, the most modern studio for post-production in the world, Jackson’s team with the help of the same animation techniques used for the movie achieved a TV spot looking like a sequence of the movie itself.

Weta Digital even completed the print campaign. Touareg, crew, jungle, mountains, lianas, the T- rex – everything was pieced together with high precision to create the world of Skull Island and New York in 1933. The ads will be printed in many publications and put on www.volkswagen.com as of the beginning of November.

It was Volkswagen's wish to remain as close as possible to the film with the advertising. Volkswagen’s agency Grabarz & Partner thus developed a campaign, which Universal offered to have produced by Peter Jackson's team in the King Kong setting. “This was an unique offer that we obviously happily accepted," says Jörn Hinrichs, head of marketing at Volkswagen.

It was also an extraordinary move for NBC Universal. "We wanted to ensure that everything was presented as authentically as possible," says Stephanie Sperber, the head of the partnerships department at NBC Universal. "And what better way to ensure this than to have the same team produce the film and the advert."

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