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Absolut launches ‘Absolut Hugs’ TV Commercial

Absolut defies the recession and presents its first global marketing initiative since Pernod Ricard acquired Absolut Vodka. In mid April, the brand launches “Absolut Hugs” globally, a new visionary TV commercial depicting a world where transactions are paid for with affection and gratitude, rather than currency.

As a part of the “In An Absolut World” campaign that depicts scenes from a more vibrant world as envisioned by the brand, the “Hugs” spot sends a spirit of community, suggesting that “In an Absolut World”, money can be replaced by acts of kindness. It was first shown to 19 million TV viewers in the U.S. during the Grammy Awards presentation. Since then, an impressive number of people have already seen it on YouTube and now the campaign is rolling out globally.

“With Absolut Hugs we became the first-ever spirits brand to advertise at the Grammy Awards. Never before have we reached so many people in such a short time. “Hugs” is a warm, engaging and perfectly timed advertisement, reflecting the mood of our global consumers. The spot was very well received in the U.S., and we look forward to showing it to the rest of the world,” said Matthias Aeppli, Vice President Marketing, The Absolut Company. “It is a demonstration of our confidence that we are launching this global campaign at a time when our competitors are making major cutbacks on advertising. This is our first global campaign under our new ownership, and “Hugs” shows that Pernod Ricard is determined to keep the brand’s long-term focus on creative marketing.”

All shot in Argentina, the spot takes the viewer to eight different countries, showing people all over the world hugging and kissing rather than exchanging money when “buying” groceries and movie tickets or “paying” for bus and taxi rides. During 3 days of shooting, a cast of hundreds exchanged countless hugs in front of the cameras.

“It was a spectacular shoot with an overload of kindness from both actors and members of the crew. The positive theme of the spot created a special atmosphere during the shooting, which can be seen in the behind the scenes movie now being launched at YouTube,” said Jesper Andreasson, Global Manager of Communication Development, The Absolut Company.

“Hugs” was directed by visionary Michael Haussman who previously has directed videos for Britney Spears, Kanye West, Chemical Brothers, Justin Timberlake and Madonna, as well as commercials for adidas, BMW, Coca-Cola and Yves Saint Laurent. Director of photography was Paul Cameron, whose cinematic credits include “Collateral” and “Gone in 60 Seconds”.

Absolut Hugs features a soundtrack especially composed for the ad. When the brand got the chance to premiere the spot on the Grammy Awards, Absolut chose a classic soundtrack by beloved jazz artist Louis Armstrong. The spot was created by TBWA\Chiat\Day and is available in a 30- and 60 sec version.

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