Bollywood Meets Piccadilly Circus

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JWT is selling Kingfisher, India's leading lager, in London, with a somewhat bizarre outdoor campaign that parodies Indian ad styles. Kingfisher, the flagship lager brand of United Breweries with a share of more than 40 percent of the total Indian beer market, according to JWT, aims to capture the minds of British males by "absorbing the brand's Indian heritage and culture" in the ads, but with an added "British edge by recognizing the greater sophistication of U.K. advertising." Indian posters are traditionally hand-painted, so the creative team of Craig Hunt and James Humphreys, along with photographer Toby Summerskill, took photos of members of the Indian community in Ilford and Brick Lane, which became the basis of art by illustrator Mike Koelsch. These "over-the-top illustrations are brought down to earth" by the line, "India's No. 1 lager, despite this advertising." The creatives point out that the posters are based on typical Indian hand-painted ads, not typical Indian hand-painted beer ads, since there aren't any-it's illegal to advertise alcoholic beverages in India. The posters appear on London taxis and rickshaws and in Indian restaurants, among other places.

Client: United Breweries Agency: JWT, London Creatives: James Humphreys, Craig Hunt Illustrator: Mike Koelsch Photographer: Toby Summerskill

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