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The Keg is Dead! Clemenger BBDO AUS on How They Created a Sombre Yet Witty Spot for Carlton Draught


LBB’s Casey Martin talked to Richard Williams ECD and Ant Phillips, group creative director from ClemBBDO on the inspiration behind this fun-eral

The Keg is Dead! Clemenger BBDO AUS on How They Created a Sombre Yet Witty Spot for Carlton Draught

There's a ritual that all good pub patrons must endure in order to fully understand the pub experience. It can happen at any time, and you can never prepare yourself for it. Then it hits… the keg running dry on a Sunday afternoon. 

It’s devastating. We’ve all been there, the disappointed chorus of “oh man” and “really?” singing through the pub while you wait for the new keg to take its place. 

Richard Williams ECD and Ant Phillips, group creative director of Clemenger BBDO Australia, captured this experience perfectly in a spot that celebrates the life of Carlton Draught. 
LBB> First and foremost, congratulations on a wonderful spot! What was the brief for this campaign and the initial conversations surrounding it?
Richard> Thank you. This idea came about because of Carlton Draught’s ongoing sponsorship with the AFL. They were keen to invest in Carlton Draught and remind drinkers of what a powerful brand it still is. We thought it was a great opportunity for Carlton Draught to get back to what they do the best: big, silly, fun ideas. They have an iconic platform in “made from beer”  that reminds drinkers to stay grounded, and we wanted to breathe some life back into it. 

Ant> After all the hardship of the last few years when we haven’t been able to go back to the pub, we thought it was time to celebrate the pub and all the rituals of the front bar.
LBB> Once decided on the idea, what inspiration was used to enhance the spot?
Ant> Carlton Draught has always taken the piss out of excess. We thought it was time to take the piss out of the pomp and ceremony. There are some high profile coronations, and we've just seen some big royal weddings and funerals that are farcical extravagant celebrations… They must be stopped.
Richard> We also love tapping (sorry) into an insight about the pub, and the moment a keg runs out was perfect. It is a moment all punters understand. That horrible sense of dread. You have made your decision, and there is no going back. We always talk about that moment which probably only takes a couple of minutes, but actually feels like a couple of years.
LBB> Talk us through the shoot days, what were the highlights? 
Richard> The shoot was freaking hot. It was the hottest Sydney day in two years. Which was perfect when you have 60 or so extras wearing the heaviest of wardrobe, fancy headwear, over the top instruments. It was also good having a fully functioning canon on set, just to keep everyone on their toes. 
LBB> The cast do a wonderful job conveying the sorrowful funeral march, and those in the pub are deadpan and very used to this event happening. What was the intention behind this?  
Ant> Yeah, the joke is that this happens every time. Carlton are obsessed with beer and carry out this ridiculous ceremony with every keg that runs out. For everyone else it is completely horrendous. We love the thought that it ends up disrupting the whole city as it makes its way back to the brewery. I think it also ties into that whole thought that it feels like the changing of the keg takes forever at a pub.
LBB> Were they any unexpected challenges that arose during this process? 
Ant> It was a big shoot and we were very ambitious on the number of shots we needed to get, which brought some challenges. Steve Ayson directed it and was meticulous in the planning and shooting of every scene. It meant we moved quickly and wasted precious little. He had a vision that everyone, from agency to client to crew, bought into and being such a talented director brought it to life perfectly.
Richard> There are always challenges in regard to how we communicate responsibly when it comes to beer. The average person would have no idea just how tough these guidelines are and rightfully so. But it means we are walking a constant tightrope especially when you’re working with hyperbole and parody, as everything in the code is assessed very literally. Fortunately we were able to stay on the right side of the code and not lose any of the humour. 

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Clemenger BBDO Australia, Tue, 02 May 2023 00:23:23 GMT