- Product/Brand - VO5
- Spot - The General / The Peasant
- Music Title - The General and The Peasant
- Composer - Gir, Byrt, Nahoulakian, Kellett, Greswell
- Publisher - Copyright Control
- Master Rights - Menlo Park Music
- Music Supervisor - Big Sync Music
- Ad Agency - Havas Worldwide
- Creatives - Mark Fairbanks, Dominic Gettins
- Film Company - Knucklehead
- Film Director - Rob Leggatt
- Post Production - Finish
- Air Date - 12/6/15
Past screen campaigns for Unilever’s market-leading haircare brand VO5 have centred on casually-coiffed teens hitting out at repressive regimes.
But, says Havas Worldwide’s creative director Dominic Gettins, “boys don’t see authority figures as the enemy in the way they used to, which is why our latest films (for VO5’s new putty and paste products Rough It Up and Thicken It Up) are more about being yourself.”
Crossing fairy tale The Prince And The Pauper with Hollywood blockbuster Trading Places and hit Brit pic Sliding Doors, the two overlapping commercials focus on the aspirations of a Peasant to become a President and a General to become a Pop star in a fictional banana republic.
“We examined a wide range of songs and styles before we realised we needed a bespoke composition which would complement the individual flavour of both films,” says Andy Stafford, creative director at Unilever’s favoured supervisors Big Sync Music.
“Menlo Park Music (MPM) really hit the spot with their demo and a brilliant final score."
MPM can already boast a great history with Havas and VO5 – having won a 2012 Best Use of Music D&AD Award for the Pliktisijiteur Pageant campaign set in a 19th century Amish community.
Says MPM creative director Christopher Taylor: “This time VO5 called for something that mixed an initial melancholy with quirky humour… but also accurately reflected the South American setting.”
London-based US retro country singer (and MPM team member) Piney Gir helped achieve the requisite authenticity by creating the choral parts underpinning the films’ heroic final sequences.