CR Blog

Grant aids Guardian attempt to 'own' weekends

Advertising

Posted by Patrick Burgoyne, 10 January 2013, 17:37    Permalink    Comments (12)

'Hugh Grant to star in Guardian ad' ran a story on the paper's website. Turns out the actor doesn't so much 'star' in as 'briefly introduce' a strangely disjointed movie trailer spoof puffing the Guardian and Observer's weekend editions

The Guardian's trailing of its own ad campaign was roundly ridiculed in the comments section by the paper's online readers, as was Grant's involvement. (One wit recalled a line from The Thick of It in stating that it was a case of "A posh bloke who hates newspapers advertising a posh paper that hates newspapers".) Some also speculated about whether the actor's appearance in the ad might be some form of 'pay back' for The Guardian's phone hacking coverage. Perhaps anticipating this, in a press release about the ad, the paper stressed that Grant had not been paid for his contribution. Weird. Why should it matter if he was paid or not?
















The full-length version of the ad (directed by Tim Godsall and produced by Biscuit Films) will, we are told, run online only. Cut down versions will be seen in cinemas. This perhaps explains the ad's fragmented, episodic nature – the snippets may well work much better on their own.

Again, it's from BBH (written by Wesley Hawes and Gary McCreadie), which had such awards success with Three Little Pigs for the paper last year. While that ad took great pains to explain the modern news-gathering process and how stories develop quickly over time and over a multitude of channels, this one is a much more straightforward pitch for spending some quality time with the Saturday Guardian and The Observer.

Does it work? Grant's involvement is minimal - something which may or may not be a plus, depending on your taste. Post-Leveson, some fun is had at his expense as we are led to believe that he has been lured into getting involved on the basis that at last here was a serious paper that was above the tawdry exploitation of celebrities for commercial ends. The film has a gentle dig at stereotypical Guardianistas too as Mr and Mrs Smug debate whether to "catch the modernism show in town" or do something exciting with salmon and the use of cheesy stock footage is fun. The scene in the lift, however, is just painful and this full-length version feels a bit all over the place. Better to wait for the 30s and 60s in the cinema to judge its true impact perhaps.

Now, can we stop with the movie trailer spoofs please? I think we've all had enough haven't we?

CR in Print
The January issue of Creative Review is all about the Money - well, almost. What do you earn? Is everyone else getting more? Do you charge enough for your work? How much would it cost to set up on your own? Is there a better way of getting paid? These and many more questions are addressed in January's CR.

But if money's not your thing, there's plenty more in the issue: interviews with photographer Alexander James, designer Mirko Borsche and Professor Neville Brody. Plus, Rick Poynor on Anarchy magazine, the influence of the atomic age on comic books, Paul Belford's art direction column, Daniel Benneworth-Gray's This Designer's Life column and Gordon Comstock on the collected memos, letters and assorted writings of legendary adman David Ogilvy.

Please note, CR now has a limited presence on the newsstand at WH Smith high street stores (although it can still be found in WH Smith travel branches at train stations and airports). If you cannot find a copy of CR in your town, your WH Smith store or a local independent newsagent can order it for you. You can search for your nearest stockist here. Alternatively, call us on 020 7970 4878 to buy a copy direct from us. Based outside the UK? Simply call +44(0)207 970 4878 to find your nearest stockist. Better yet, subscribe to CR for a year here and save yourself almost 30% on the printed magazine.

CR for the iPad
Read in-depth features and analysis plus exclusive iPad-only content in the Creative Review iPad App. Longer, more in-depth features than we run on the blog, portfolios of great, full-screen images and hi-res video. If the blog is about news, comment and debate, the iPad is about inspiration, viewing and reading. As well as providing exclusive, iPad-only content, the app will also update with new content throughout each month.

12 Comments

"this video is private"
Josh
2013-01-11 14:26:13


@ Josh

Gah - they've changed the settings on YouTube since we put the story up. We will upload shortly. Was wondering why no-one had commented!
CR PatrickBurgoyne
2013-01-11 14:52:07


this is totally awesome.
Tom
2013-01-12 12:33:04


So disjointed, feels like they changed direction after they shot Grant and used it anyway. All in all pretty shoddily thrown together, some nice touches in camera movement overshadowed by what seems like multiple ideas cobbled together resulting in utter nonsense.

That said I'm a fan of the Guardian and their creative outlook, a small blip in an otherwise unblemished record.
Marcus Uniform
2013-01-12 14:14:58


I love it. Don't get too hung up on this. There are a multitude of god awful commercials that fall far further below the line. This is a nice little gimmick that should be embraced. At least there is an attempt to try and entertain the viewer in a slightly intellectual way. Unlike just trying to shove a product down your throat with zero tact. This gets my thumbs up for effort!
F
2013-01-13 15:14:37


Theres two good ad's here. Greedy clients wanted it all obvzz.
Alex
2013-01-14 10:31:00


This is being run as as an ad at the films (I saw it before Life of Pi 3D, whatever that means). On the big screen, the Hugh Grant bit is fun, and the movie-like second half looks suitably epic, but they really don't fit together (and I wasn't that keen on the humour in the second half either). Still, at least it's a change from Nokia, Windows 7 and Chrome ads!
Vicky
2013-01-14 14:53:35


Brilliant idea, poorly, poorly executed...
ocube
2013-01-14 14:54:51


The weirdest thing about all of this, I think, is Hugh's messy shirt and tie combo. Why did no one fix it for him before they started filming? The rest of it, very surreal and disjointed, but not in a good way.
Ali
2013-01-14 15:26:23


That's it - never reading the smug thing again... "I was thinking of catching this modernism exhibition in town..." I give up, I give up.
Tm Copsey
2013-01-15 13:20:52


Very funny. Hats off to The Guardian/Observer for making another newspaper ad you'd want to forward on
Chris Hannah
2013-01-15 14:09:20


The Money Supermarket Weekend, what?
Adam Smith
2013-01-15 18:32:21


Tell us what you think

What happens with my feedback?

We no longer require you to register and have a password in order to comment, simply fill in the form below. All comments are moderated so you may experience a short delay before your comment appears. CR encourages comments to be short and to the point. As a general rule, they should not run longer than the original post. Comments should show a courteous regard for the presence of other voices in the discussion. We reserve the right to edit or delete comments that do not adhere to this standard.

Get the RSS Feed
NULL